Marcel Duchamp Ă‰tant donnĂ©s
Michael R. Taylor
With essays by Andrew Lins, Melissa S. Meighan, and Beth A. Price, Ken Sutherland, Scott Homolka, and Elena Torok
343 color and 117 black-and-white illustrations
ISBN: 978-0-87633-210-8 In his early thirties, Marcel Duchamp (1887â€“1968) convinced everyone that he had abandoned making art in favor of playing chess. But from 1946 to 1966, he was secretly at work in his studio on West Fourteenth Street in New York City. There he produced his final masterpiece: Ă‰tant donnĂ©s: 1Âş la chute dâ€™eau, 2Âş le gaz dâ€™Ă©clairage, composed of a battered wood door through which one views a prone, nude female, holding aloft an antique gas lamp against a landscape of trees, waterfall, and sky. Unveiled as a permanent installation at the Philadelphia Museum of Art in July 1969, the year after Duchampâ€™s death, the work startled the art world with its explicit eroticism and voyeurism, as well as its trompe lâ€™oeil realism. Since its public debut, Ă‰tant donnĂ©s has been recognized as one of the most important and enigmatic works of the twentieth century. Published to commemorate the fortieth anniversary of the original installation of Ă‰tant donnĂ©s and to accompany the first major exhibition on the work and its studies, this richly illustrated book presents a wealth of new research and documents that draw upon previously unpublished works of art, photographs, and other materials. The catalogue also examines the critical and artistic reception of Ă‰tant donnĂ©s, as evidenced by the subsequent work of Les Levine, Hannah Wilke, Robert Gober, Marcel Dzama, Ray Johnson, and other artists who have engaged with Duchampâ€™s provocative and challenging tableau-construction. Michael R. Taylor is the Muriel and Philip Berman Curator of Modern Art at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.