Monday, December 6, 2010

Marcel Duchamp

French artist Marcel Duchamp was born on July 28, 1887 and died on October 2, 1968 in his native country, France. He was part of the Dada and Surrealism movements and is known for his painting's sculpture, and film. His grandfather Emile Nicolle was an artist and his work could be found all over Duchamp's home. There were seven children born to Eugene and Lucie Duchamp although one died as an infant. Three of his siblings became successful artists. Jacques Villon was a painter and printmaker, Raymond Duchamp-Villon was a sculptor, and his sister Suzanna Duchamp-Crotti was also a painter. One of his earlier works is titled Nude Descending a Staircase No.2 (1912) is an oil painting on canvas which looks like a Cubist's version of a nude person walking down a staircase and the painting almost looks like a motion picture.

He is mostly known for his readymade sculptures and one in particular made him one of the most important artists ever. His piece titled Fountain created 1917 for a show featuring avant-garde work is simply a urinal signed "R. Mutt" and it was an extremely radical piece for its time. In 2004 Fountain was selected as "the most influential artwork of the 20th century" by a pool of 500 historians and artists. This is because it symbolizes Duchamp's disregard for the norm or convention. At the time the piece was scandalous and after much debate on whether or not it was art it was hidden during the show. There are many interpretations on its symbolism and on the signature "R. Mutt" but no one can say for sure what they really mean. The original piece has beem lost but replicas are shown in exibits. Marcus Duchamp's Fountain inspired many artists by opening the doors to infinite possibilities and soon everyday objects would become very common in many different genres of art.

No comments:

Post a Comment