Cover image for Marcel Duchamp
Marcel Duchamp
Ades, Dawn.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
London ; New York : Thames and Hudson, [1999]

Physical Description:
224 pages : illustrations (some color) ; 21 cm.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
N6853.D8 A834 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



Genius, anti-artist, charlatan, guru, imposter? Since 1914 Marcel Duchamp has been called all these. Arousing passion and controversy, he has exerted a great influence on art, whose very nature he challenged and redefined as concept rather than product by questioning its traditionally privileged optical nature. At the same time, he never ceased to be engaged, openly or secretly, in provocative and enigmatic activities and works which transformed traditional artmaking procedures. This monograph, written with the support of Duchamp's widow, challenges received ideas, misunderstanding and misinformation.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Of the several recent publications on that notable but elusive protagonist of early modernism, this one has the welcome novelty of being a straightforward, highly intelligible account of his sometimes puzzling undertakings. Free of the gimmickry and pretentiousness that interpretations of his seminal iconoclasm often tend to assume, its nine brief chapters, seamlessly written by collaborating authors, trace Duchamp's career chronologically, from his early involvements with caricature and verbal humor, through his flirtations with symbolism, Cubism, psychic connotations of machinery, and the other irreverent gestures of his middle and later years. Illustrated with 164 color plates and halftone figures that are sometimes small but sufficient to their purpose, Ades's book is clearly intended for the lay reader as well as the initiate, without the taint of condescension. It thus fulfills a worthy and difficult purpose with a certain elegance. The chronology and bibliographical notes are compact but sufficient; list of illustrations follows. All levels. F. A. Trapp; Amherst College