Marcel Duchamp: Work and Life

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Marcel Duchamp, Pontus Hultén, Jennifer Gough-Cooper, Jacques Caumont
MIT Press, 1993 - Art - 148 pages
texts by Jennifer Gough-Cooper and Jacques Caumont

As the century draws to a close, it becomes increasingly clear how profoundly Marcel Duchamp influenced the trajectory of modem art. This remarkable book with its more than 1,300 illustrations covers 70 years of Duchamp's artistic production and traces his elusive personae across that same span. It documents his extraordinary achievements in painting and sculpture as well as his life-long involvement with chess, film, theater, and people - from intimate encounters to artistic liaisons.

Marcel Duchamp is designed as a double-faced publication: from one direction, entitled Works, it contains a catalogue reproducing Duchamp's paintings, sculptures, and miscellaneous objects (150 illustrated in color). From the other direction, entitled Ephemerides, unfolds a day-by-day account of the artist's life, organized by astrological sign. The greater part of this detailed chronology relies upon unpublished materials. It is enriched by 1,200 documents and photographs, including a number of works by Duchamp that have never before been reproduced. Each section is printed on a different color paper.

Sandwiched between these two sections is a concordance listing writings by and about Duchamp, a bibleography (letters sent by Duchamp), exhibition catalogues, a chronology of chess games, and a filmog­raphy.

Pontus Hulten, Director of the Palazzo Grassi in Venice between 1985 and 1989, is the chief curator of the Duchamp exhibition in Venice. Jennifer Gough-Cooper and Jacques Caumont are Duchamp scholars who have devoted themselves exclusively to Duchamp studies for the past fifteen years.

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Marcel Duchamp: work and life

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A dense and prodigious work befitting the grandfather of postmodernism, this volume is both a compilation of finished works and an intricate and comprehensive archive. It is unlike other art ... Read full review

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About the author (1993)

Pontus Hulten is the artistic director of the Kunst-und-Austellungshalle in Bonn, Germany.
The painters Natalia Dumitresco and Alexandre Istrati are heirs of the Brancusi estate. Together the authors reconstructed Brancusi's Paris studio at the Centre Pompidou, which is now open to the public.

Jennifer Gough-Cooper studied at Hornsey College of Art in the 1960s, and has worked as an exhibition organizer. Geoff Dyer is the author of many acclaimed books, including "Ways of Telling: The Work of John Berger" and the award-winning "But Beautiful". Both live in England.

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