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Why Not Sneeze Rrose Sélavy?

Marcel Duchamp challenged traditional definitions of art with his controversial readymades, produced between 1913 and 1921. The readymades were mass-produced items, some slightly altered, that Duchamp presented as works of art. In 1964, Duchamp and his Milan dealer Arturo Schwarz produced a limited edition of replicas of the original readymades, most of which had been lost. The Eskenazi Museum of Art owns one of only three complete sets of the 1964 edition of eight (the others are at the National Gallery of Canada and the Israel Museum).

In this elaborate work, 152 marble cubes in the shape of sugar lumps are housed inside a birdcage, along with a thermometer and a cuttlebone. The title is a reference to Duchamp’s female alter ego.

Marcel Duchamp
French (active in the United States), 1887‒1968
Why Not Sneeze Rrose Sélavy?
1964 authorized replica edition (original 1921)
Marble cubes, thermometer, and cuttlebone in painted metal and wood birdcage
Edition 8/8
4 15/16 x 8 5/8 x 6 13/16 in. (12.5 x 21.9 x 17.3 cm)
Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Museum of Art, Partial gift of Mrs. William H. Conroy, 71.37.13

Large image not available.