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This artwork, Couple of Laundress’s Aprons by Marcel Duchamp, is currently for sale at Galerie Ronny Van de Velde.
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Marcel Duchamp, Couple of Laundress’s Aprons
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TITLE:  Couple of Laundress’s Aprons
ARTIST:  Marcel Duchamp (French, 1887–1968)
WORK DATE:  1959
MATERIALS:  Imitated rectified readymade: two potholders (male and female), cloth and fur, male (20,3 x 17,7 cm), female (20,5 x 19,8 cm). Both aprons enclosed in paper envelope, with green French Customs label, and red stamp: Echantillons sans valeur.
EDITION/SET OF:  20 numbered copies, this copy no. XIV/XX, for the de luxe version of “Boîte alerte”, catalogue of the Exposition Internationale du Surréalisme, Paris, Galerie Cordier, December 15, 1959-February 15, 1960.
MARKINGS:  Each apron signed in full ‘Marcel Duchamp’ on cloth label on verso.
STYLE:  Modern
PRICE*:  Contact Gallery for Price
GALLERY:  Galerie Ronny Van de Velde  + 32 3 216 93 90  Send Email
DESCRIPTION:  We join the de luxe catalogue itself, cardboard mail-box with printed catalogue of the exhibition and eight ‘missives lascives’ by Robert Benayoun, Micheline Bounoure, Alain Joubert, Joyce Mansour, Mimi Parent, Octavio Paz, André Pieyre de Mandiargues and XXX; a cable by Marcel Duchamp, ‘Je purule Tu purules Lachaise Purules ...’ transcribed on a facsimile of a standard pink form for French cables; a 45 rpm record with texts by Benjamin Péret and Joyce Mansour; four original colour lithographs by Adrien Dax, Joan Miro, Max Walter Svanberg and Toyen; an etching by Maréchal; six colour postcards by Hans Bellmer, Salvador Dali, Arshile Gorky, Joan Miro, Max Walter Svanberg and Clovis Trouille. The lithographs and the etching signed by the artists. - We also join a couple of ephemera, nearly as rare as the de luxe edition of the catalogue itself: three entrance tickets for the exhibition, nos. 003112b; 0033113b; 0033114b (limiting the visit to 15 minutes!) and 2 sheets of 4 blue stamps with the text Restez, enchanteresse.

Duchamp’s contributions to surrealist group exhibitions always contained an unorthodox element. His support for the group’s activities certainly was genuine, but he never was interested in producing works according to methods other than his own. He fixed the rules of his own game; the ego and its own. The theme of the large surrealist exhibition of 1959 being eroticism and its subversive power, Duchamp adds a note of ‘low culture’, suggesting the household character of so much sex, and of course the Heat of it all. Most of Duchamp’s work is about erotics, from le grand verrre to Etant donnés, but the enigma’s evocations are always mixed with black humour. His melancholy is guarded from a well-protected centre.

ONLINE CATALOGUE(S):  Galerie Ronny Van de Velde Inventory Catalogue
LITERATURE:  Arturo Schwarz, The Complete Works of Marcel Duchamp, New York, 1997, no. 574, illustrated
EXHIBITION HISTORY:  MARTA, Herford, 2008, Ad Absurdum, illustrated.
Museum Kunst Palast, Düsseldorf 2009, Diana und Actaeon, Der verbotene Blick auf Nacktheit.
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