With a hundred-odd works, the Centre Pompidou is devotingan exceptional monographic exhibition to the pictorialwork of Marcel Duchamp, centred on the paintingand drawings that led to the celebrated Le Grand Verre,”La mariée mise à nu par ses célibataires, même“ (The BrideStripped Bare by her Suitors, Even (The Large Glass))between 1910 and 1923.Through an unusual and deliberately paradoxical approach,the exhibition shows the pictures of the man who,in the common modernist opinion, killed painting.Marcel Duchamp, though an iconoclastic ”anartist“ fromthe Twenties onwards, conscientiously gathered his previouspaintings together in the hands of a small circle of collectors,and replicated them in his Boîte-en-Valise (Box in a Suitcase)for posterity (the viewers), in order to show his great work- Le Grand Verre - as part of a long, consistent and complexcreative process. Little known in Europe, these paintings,now mostly in the Philadelphia Museum, will be broughttogether for the occasion, surrounded by the pictorial,scientific and technical sources, as well those acquiredfrom books, that Duchamp drew on during these crucialand fertile years.From humorous drawings to the Nu descendant l’escalier,from mechanics to the theme of the ”Bride“, from workson perspective to the films of Marey and Méliès,from Impressionism to Cubism, and Cranach the Elderto Manet, taking in Francis Picabia and Kupka alongthe way, the circuit takes the public step by step throughthe construction of one of the most enigmatic bodiesof works in modern art. It puts the spotlight on Duchamp'spictorial studies, his Fauve period, the influence of Symbolism,his Cubist and mathematical explorations, the nonsenseand humour he imbued his work with, and his keen interestin language and the optical, physical and mechanical sciences.Providing a rich environment for a meticulously thoughtout creative process, the exhibition thus provides keysto interpreting Duchamp's programmatic work La mariéemise à nu par ses célibataires, même.
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