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Étant donnés: 1° la chute d'eau, 2° le gaz d'éclairage . . . (Given: 1. The Waterfall, 2. The Illuminating Gas . . . )
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Étant donnés: 1° la chute d'eau, 2° le gaz d'éclairage . . . (Given: 1. The Waterfall, 2. The Illuminating Gas . . . )

Marcel Duchamp, American (born France), 1887 - 1968

Made in New York, New York, United States, North and Central America


Mixed media assemblage: (exterior) wooden door, iron nails, bricks, and stucco; (interior) bricks, velvet, wood, parchment over an armature of lead, steel, brass, synthetic putties and adhesives, aluminum sheet, welded steel-wire screen, and wood; Peg-Board, hair, oil paint, plastic, steel binder clips, plastic clothespins, twigs, leaves, glass, plywood, brass piano hinge, nails, screws, cotton, collotype prints, acrylic varnish, chalk, graphite, paper, cardboard, tape, pen ink, electric light fixtures, gas lamp (Bec Auer type), foam rubber, cork, electric motor, cookie tin, and linoleum

7 feet 11 1/2 inches × 70 inches × 49 inches (242.6 × 177.8 × 124.5 cm)

© Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris / Succession Marcel Duchamp

Curatorial Department:
European Painting

* Gallery 283, Modern and Contemporary Art, second floor (d’Harnoncourt Gallery)

Accession Number:

Credit Line:
Gift of the Cassandra Foundation, 1969

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In 1923, after abandoning The Large Glass, Marcel Duchamp let it be known that he had stopped making art in order to devote himself to his favorite pastime, chess. Thus the news, after Duchamp's death in 1968, that he had actually spent the last two decades of his life working secretly on an elaborate, final project was greeted with universal surprise. Accompanied only by a carefully compiled installation manual, the content of the piece remained mysterious while its bold realism shocked both Duchamp's champions as well as his detractors. In accordance with the artist's final wishes, the piece was acquired by the Cassandra Foundation and offered to the Philadelphia Museum of Art, where it took its place nearby the artist's other major works in 1969.

* Works in the collection are moved off view for many different reasons. Although gallery locations on the website are updated regularly, there is no guarantee that this object will be on display on the day of your visit.