Friday, 14 March 2008
The joyous sense of a mind that has broken free of all restraints - a mind at play in a game of its own devising, whose resolution is infinitely delayed. The bride, who is queen of the game ... will never achieve her ardently desired orgasm. Her 'blossoming', Duchamp tells us, is merely the last state of this nude bride before the orgasm which may (might) bring about her fall. She is like Keats' maiden on the Grecian urn, forever in passage between desire and fulfillment, and it is precisely this state of erotic passage that Duchamp has chosen as the subject of his greatest work. Sexual fulfillment, with its overtones of disappointment, loss and 'fall' from grace was never an option. The bride, the bachelors, and by implication the onlooker as well are suspended in a state of permanent desire.
Calvin Tomkins on Marcel Duchamp's The Bride Stripped Bare by her Bachelors, Even.
He simply changed the terms by which painting had lived for centuries. In changing the rules, in re-inventing art as though it had never existed, he re-opened the possibility of working. The new rules were these: Art is conceptual - that is to say it has nothing to do with visual stimuli external to the artist's mind. It was to be as absolutely conceptual as much of the art of the past had been retinal.
Richard Hamilton on Marcel Duchamp, Art International, January 1964.
L.U.V. on y'all,