Wednesday, May 06, 2009

A piece by Marcel Duchamp


wolfie wolferson said...

I'm not sure about the value of this as art.

Blue Maskerson said...

I just don't like it. Nothing grabs me.

Denis said...

The value as an object is not much, but its value as art is priceless. It created a whole new way of viewing and thinking about art. So many of the most famous artists today could not be doing what they are doing without Duchamp.

cara said...

In my neighbourhood here in Toronto, people often leave junk out in front of their houses, for pick up or for's a bit of an eyesore...however, there is a old, toilet that someone left out just down the street, someone has painted "R.Mutt" on it. I've been trying to understand what that is supposed to mean for WEEKS!

I get it now.

donmaximo said...

Hmmm, is the original piece the actual urinal by itself, or the photograph as presented on the blog?

I agree with Denis that it has value. I found the image, as presented on the blog, very fascinating to look at. Sort of like the way stuff viewed through a microscope is fascinating. It's only a urinal, but the way it's shown on its back, with the bolt holes on the side exposed and the entrance for the pipe pointing forward – kind of like a part from some alien space ship. Then, the painted signature dripping down the surface – that bit reminds me of a David Lynch film.

I feel that it has value because the artist has taken the object and exposed it in a way it would not normally be viewed. He has changed our perception of the object and in effect, created something new and alien with it.

A still life painting is considered art for the work and skill the artist devotes to its painting, although there may be little creative license involved. Does a photograph of a fruit bowl have value as art? I think so. It might not appeal to everyone, but I think it has value in that the photographer is opening the viewer’s eyes to their perception of things, whether the viewer agrees with that perception or not. I think installments work in the same way, and this too.

My two cents.

Anonymous said...

Knackerson's guerrilla tactics here are a bit unnerving, but this work did come to mind with our last discussion. I also thought of 'Waiting for Godot'. Did you know there was a riot when that play first came out (because people didn't think it was 'proper' theatre)! When bluemask said the whole questioning of art is over done, there are definitely times I'm in agreement, but also times where it is pivotal (both Twombly and Duchamp are attributed to the later). When I went to one of the big galleries in Chicago, there was an 'Homage to Duchamp' piece that was basically this same thing, but gold plated. I did roll my eyes at this a bit. I think it's perfectly natural for people to dislike work that doesn't fit withing their definition of Art, to question the craftsmanship, conceptual weight, and all that stuff. Ideally we could discuss those boundaries here without getting too mean (yes Knacks, I think the level of your provocation should also be in question). Broadening our understanding and tolerance of (even convincingly crappy art) makes us better informed on art in general, as well as our own art. I find that with painting, a common misconception is that time/effort = quality. In many cases this is true, but I found out the hard way, you can work on a shitty painting for a long time and still have it be shitty (sorry for the potty talk). That leaves a lot to be said for creative thinking, invention, and efficient concepts.

Wordverif: sherule

(who are the female artist towing the line like Duchamp?)

cara said...

How about Aganetha Dyck?

She co create her works with bees.

TheBlueMask said...

I find it more pissy than crappy

wolfBoy said...

i'm not sure about the value of this as art.

Anonymous said...


Today, the original version of Fountain has long been lost. "All that remains are the replicas made by Sidney Janis in 1950, by Ulf Linde in 1963, and by Arturo Schwartz in 1964, and also, of course, the photograph taken by Alfred Stieglitz in 1917"

1) 1950, New York
Private Collection
30.4 x 38.2 x 45.9 cm
Selected by Sidney Janis in Paris at request of Duchamp for exhibition in NY, 1950

2) 1953, Paris
Selected for sale at auction to benefit a friend of Duchamp

Replica, 1964
3) 1963, Stockholm
Moderna Museet, Stockholm
Gift of the Moderna Museets Vanner
33 x 42 x 52 cm
Selected by Ulf Linde for Duchamp retrospective, Stockholm, 1963
Inscribed on upper side (in block letters, not artist's handwriting): "R. Mutt / 1917"
Inscribed by artist in 1964

4) October 1964, Milan
Edition of eight, each 36 x 48 x 61 cm
Under artist's supervision from Stieglitz photo of original
Inscribed exterior top rim, in black paint, "Marcel Duchamp 1964"
On back rim: "R. MUTT / 1917"
Small copper plate to back: "Marcel Duchamp 1964 1/8-8/8", "FOUNTAIN / 1917 / EDITION GALERIE SCHWARZ, MILAN"
2 replicas to artist and publisher, 2 more for museum exhibition

TheBlueMask said... somebody may have a priceless urinal in their basement?
I understand it's importance at the time. I still can't help think that it contributed to the "novelty art" movement. It opened doors that we may never close again. That's not always a good thing. I remember when i first heard Run DMC in the 80's. I was thinking "This is great, but, I'm afraid of what it will lead to". Bad imitation. I went to a show recently that was full of Dzama imitation. I had a chuckle, but there was so much. Yes I understand that it is a natural progression. The poor kids today are force fed what is "in" as opposed to my generation. We had to research things we found interesting, sans internet. Todays media contributes to quick fix art, life, and happiness. Us folks in our 30's are merely basking in the technology afterglow, but I don't envy the youth(they are adaptable though). Remember learning chords from records? Now everything is a click away. I think they are missing out on part of the journey to find that chord. And I blame it all on this damn urinal!

TheBlueMask said...

...and get off my lawn damnit!
(waves rake overhead)


Anonymous said...

So your issue isn't that there is a lineage of ideas, it's that the kids these days get the exchange of information too easily?


"I'm afraid of what it will lead to"

Are you OFFENDED by art and music you don't like? I get that feeling from people often. Not that their sense of taste is offended, but they dislike say Nikelback so much, that when it comes on the radio it makes them angry, haha. Changing mood instead of a station.

This is interesting to me. I don't like to eat Lima beans, but I don't feel offended by them. Novelty Vegetable!


TheBlueMask said...

I'm next to impossible to offend. Very few subjects, that would basically have to be of an evil delivery. I'm joking around here, not translating. And this is my last comment as it appears I'm speaking to a fake me and an anon.

micro said...

Sorry, the last 2 comments were me (thought you'd know). I feel like all your names are anons, 'cept for Cara, Denis...

donmaximo said...

I'll "anon" you buddy!! =P

Anonymous said...