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Portrait (Dulcinea)

1911
Marcel Duchamp, American (born France), 1887 - 1968
This work is an erotic examination of time and movement, a portrait of a mysterious woman that Duchamp noticed on the street and imagined in various states of undress. Studying Étienne-Jules Marey’s (French, 1830 - 1904) and Eadweard Muybridge’s (American (born England), 1830 - 1904) experiments in chronophotography and beginning to develop a formal language for depicting motion in painting, Duchamp portrayed his invented character of Dulcinea here in five successive positions—each bearing less clothing, as if stripped over time. Presenting a series of static images to resemble the frames of a motion picture, Duchamp invites the viewer to animate them mentally into a fluid movement. The resulting motion portrait prefigures both his Nude Descending a Staircase, No. 2 (Philadelphia Museum of Art, 1950-134-59), painted in January 1912, and the Bride at the center of The Large Glass (Philadelphia Museum of Art, 1952-98-1)....

Object Details
Louise Arensberg (1879-1953) and Walter C. Arensberg (1878-1954), Los Angeles, by c. 1918 [1].1. Visible in a photo of the Arensbergs' New York apartment taken by Charles Sheeler c. 1918. The Arensbergs moved from New York to Los Angeles in 1921.

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