Trivium Art HistoryMarcel Duchamp

Bicycle Wheel

Bicycle Wheel, 1913 — Marcel Duchamp,
129.5 cm63.5 cm

Marcel Duchamp's readymades were sculptural assemblages of found objects, often created as jokes, visual puns, or as with the 'Bicycle Wheel' — for the simple pleasure of the juxtaposition.

Duchamp described the wheel, saying: "I enjoyed looking at it, just as I enjoy looking at the flames dancing in a fireplace." He apparently enjoyed the wheel enough to remake it several times, and although the original is now lost, his later versions can be viewed at the MOMA in New York, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The photo above is of Duchamp's third Bicycle Wheel, made in 1951.

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