Bowdoin College Museum of Art

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Marcel Duchamp Art Medal (based on Bouche-Évier, or Sink Stopper) (reverse)



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Marcel Duchamp Art Medal (based on Bouche-Évier, or Sink Stopper) (reverse)
[inspect]
1967.68.b
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Artist

Marcel Duchamp

Title

Marcel Duchamp Art Medal (based on Bouche-Évier, or Sink Stopper) (reverse)

Creation Date

1967

Medium & Support

silver

Dimensions

2 1/2 in. (6.35 cm.)

Credit Line

Gift of John C. Pickard, Class of 1922

Accession Number

1967.68.b

Copyright

This artwork may be under copyright. For further information, please consult the Museum’s Copyright Terms and Conditions.

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Marcel Duchamp’s delightful Bouche Évier, or Sink Stopper, playfully confronts the viewer with a query the artist first posed to himself in 1913: “Can one make a work of art that is not a work of art?” Duchamp’s interrogation of the very nature of art would lead to his invention of the readymade, a work of art consisting of an everyday object transformed by virtue of being removed from its ordinary environment and signed by the artist. This multiple, which derived from a lead sink stopper created by the artist, undermines the expectation that a work of art be a unique original. In a final conceptual twist, Duchamp here transforms a humble, utilitarian object into treasure by rendering it in a precious material, playing up its visual resemblance to coins and medals and raising questions about the cultural value historically placed on art objects.
 


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