Art: The Doors of Orvieto

For more than 600 years, the cathedral of Orvieto in Italy has lived with simple wooden doors adorned mainly by the weathering of time. In their austerity, the portals stood in mute contrast to the church's dazzling facade encrusted with brilliant mosaics, its priceless stained glass and marble statuary. Since several other Italian churches have undergone successful modern alterations, local church authorities thought it would be appropriate to install a contemporary set of doors designed to complement the cathedral's sumptuous beauty. In Italy, however, matters aesthetic are not always easy. Last week the cathedral had its new doors, and not only...

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