Marcel Duchamp, Le Roi et la reine entourés de nus vites, 1912
Marcel Duchamp: La peinture, même – Centre Pompidou
A key artist of the 20th century, and the inventor of the famous ready-mades (previously-produced objects chosen by the artist, transformed as little as possible and presented as works), Marcel Duchamp has often been seen as a constantly provocative iconoclast who killed painting and challenged the very nature of art.
Marcel Duchamp, A propos de jeune soeur, 1911
Yet he was first of all a painter, and it is in his painting that we can see the complexity and extreme consistency of his work from the very beginning. Through around 100 works brought together for the first time, the exhibition takes us from the early 1910s, when Duchamp thought of himself as a painter, to 1923, the year he stopped working on his great work – one of the century’s most impenetrable and complex: La Mariée mise à nu par ses célibataires, même (“The Bride Stripped Bare by her Bachelors, Even”), also known as Le Grand Verre (“The Large Glass”).
Marcel Duchamp, L.H.O.O.Q, 1919
The exhibition sheds light on issues in the artist’s thoughts about painting, and his sources – he drew on science, pictures, techniques and books alike. It thus illustrates the artist’s interest in his own times and the changes taking place not only in art, but also in literature and the optical, mechanical, physical and occult sciences.
Marcel Duchamp, Deux nus, 1910
Covering a huge range (humorous drawings, treatises on perspective, the films of Georges Méliès, the paintings of Cranach the Elder and Manet, Impressionism and Cubism), the exhibition takes us on a step-by-step journey through the development of the Grand Verre, which the artist left, as he put it, “definitively unfinished”.