~e; electromagnetic duchamp

From brian carroll <human@electronetwork.org>
Date Sun, 27 Mar 2005 22:04:46 -0600

  i am not up-to-speed on all things duchamp, though
  Steve Lauf has referenced the local collection in
  Philadelphia, and he just referred to a discovery
  of images with electrical icons, and his thoughts
  and links to the images follow below, from the
  design-l.v2 list. i should mention that there is
  a link to a work about 'duchamp and electrons' in
  the newly rehabbed electronetwork.org website,
  its education/features/urls and other sections
  are being fixed up and hopefully simplified...

* Marcel Duchamp and Electrons — Linda Dalryple Henderson — Marcel 
Duchamp's The King and Queen Surrounded by Swift Nudes (1912) and the 
Invisible World of Electrons.

  (also, i find these references at first, surprising,
  to see what is otherwise seemingly missed critical
  information, in retrospect. of the 1930s, there is
  another figure, le corbusier, whose work revolved
  around 'the machine' though under deeper analysis,
  yields much about electromagnetism, including of
  drawings of power distribution poles just as in
  this duchamp imagery, on the corner edges or the
  periphery of architectural conceptual drawings.
  the problem being they've yet to be relocated...)


Steve Lauf writes:


Saw this artwork last night as I continued to read ETANT DONNES... (by
d'Harnoncourt and Hopps).

"Another "landscape" which Duchamp produced in 1959, forms a tantalizing
link between THE LARGE GLASS and ETANT DONNES... . The punning title 
ALITÉS, is amplified by a startling inscription: "Projet pour le modèle 
de 'La Mariée mise à nu par ses célibataires, même'" The drawing is more
startling still. Duchamp has drawn a background for his GLASS! The basic
elements of the GLASS, including three parallel lines across the middle
representing the Bride's Clothes, are drawn in ink, and behind them,
apparently lightly sketched in pencil, rise the irregular rolling forms 
of a
hilly landscape. To the right, just tangent to on blade of the Scissors 
the chocolate Grinder, Duchamp has added an electrical pole, the common
variety that punctuates the countryside everywhere, complete with glass
insulating knobs and wires disappearing in the distance.

. . . .

For it is impossible not to take the view of undulating hills and the
explicit electrical pole, with the title pun to "Causalités," as a broad
hint at the assemblage [ie, ETANT DONNES] that was gradually nearing
completion in the Fourteenth Street studio. The pole its wires reads in
retrospect as a direct reference to the "electricity at large," which 
performs a practical function in the new tableau."


I can't read French, so I don't know what Duchamp's inscription says.
Nonetheless, it's evident that Duchamp (too) thought about the presence 
electricity everywhere. [Brian, I'd like to introduce this work to
electronetwork, though perhaps you might better put it in context 

I'm seeing this work as another link (albeit minuscule) between where
Duchamp's work mostly is now (ie, the Philadelphia Museum of Art) and 
collection's prime location at the head of the Benjamin Franklin 


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