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Duchamp

Delirium of Imagination: Raymond Roussel and the Large Glass

Just prior to moving to Munich in 1912, Marcel Duchamp accompanied Gaby Picabia and Apollinaire to a performance of Raymond Roussel’s play Impressions of Africa in PariSandra Roussel, the obscure French author and playwright heavily influenced by Jules Verne’s fanciful machines and dream-like voyages, adapted his novel and funded the elaborate production. Although unpopular with…

Dada Hammer: Laughing after all these years

In 1917, Marcel Duchamp’s Fountain, a factory-made urinal, was rejected as being unoriginal and outlandish.  After almost ninety years, Duchamp is still shocking the globe—from the National Gallery of Art’s Dada exhibition in Washington, D.C. to Pierre Pinoncelli’s hammer episode at the Pompidou Centre in Paris—Duchamp and the Dadaists are receiving plenty of ink these…

L.H.O.O.Q.: Avant-garde Iconoclasm or Kitsch



If we think of kitsch as a ‘style’ of bad taste, we arrive at another paradox, much deeper and more puzzling that the one just pointed out, namely the earlier mentioned possibility of consciously using bad taste (i.e., kitsch) in order to subvert the conventions of a ‘good taste’ that eventually leads to the sclerosis…

Beyond Shock, the Fountain Still Stands

Pubic hairs imbedded in soap bars, revolting inhumane acts caught on film, garish reproductions of Michael Jackson and puppies. Contemporary artists working within the realm of shock are often linked back to Marcel Duchamp. On the surface, these lesser-skilled boobs give the impression of working in the Duchampian paradigm by exploiting the vernacular, capitalizing on…

John Cage on Duchamp

Seems Pollock tried to do it—paint on glass It was in a movie. There was an admission of failure. That wasn’t the way to proceed. It’s not a question of doing again what Duchamp already did. We must nowadays nevertheless be able to look through to what’s beyond—as though we were in it looking out….