Best known for cheeky conceptual works–like his signed urinals (“R. Mutt”) and his graffitioed Mona Lisa–Marcel Duchamp (1887-1968) was also an extraordinary painter and sculptor (Nude Descending a Staircase) who changed the language of twentieth-century art and reigns with Picasso and Matisse as one of its greatest influences. Joseph Masheck has compiled a sampler of the best writing on Duchamp, with pieces that include Duchamp’s obituary from Artforum, written by Jasper Johns; Octavio Paz on the ready-mades; a Duchamp post-mortem by Hans Richter; Donald Judd’s investigation of Rrose Sévy; a “Counter-Avant-Garde” by Clement Greenberg; a consideration by Guillaume Apollinaire; and John Cage’s “26 Statements on Marcel Duchamp.” Illustrated with photographs of Duchamp’s seminal pieces, and updated with a substantial preface that offers new scholarship as well as a fascinating consideration of why Duchamp’s popularity has exponentially increased since this book first appeared, this is an essential volume for the Duchamp devotee.

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