MARCEK DUCHAMP- Readymades- The Bicycle Wheel

Essay by strawberriislusheeHigh School, 11th grade March 2007

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CitationBicycle Wheel New York 1951Third Version of the artwork after the loss of the original in 1913Assemblage: metal wheel, 63.8cmdiameter, mounted on painted wood stool, 60.2cm highOverall Dimensions: 128.3cm x 63.8cm x 42cmArtist: Marcel DuchampArtist's Aim and Purpose of the ArtworkWhen Marcel Duchamp created the first of his Ready-mades, he had not yet developed a clear idea whether his 'sculpture' was an artwork. However, in context with the revolutions occurring in art at the time, this artwork would have been intended to shock its audience. Duchamp seems to have created the piece Bicycle Wheel for his own personal experiments and enjoyment.

Quote from Duchamp: "...when I put a bicycle wheel on a stool the fork down, there was no idea of a 'readymade,' or anything else. It was just a distraction. I didn't have any special reason to do it, or any intention of showing it or describing anything.""To

see that wheel turning was very soothing, very comforting, a sort of opening of avenues on other things than material life of every day. I liked the idea of having a bicycle wheel in my studio. I enjoyed looking at it, just as I enjoy looking at the flames dancing in a fireplace."Processes and Techniques Used to Create the ArtworkBicycle Wheel was not originally considered by its creator, Marcel Duchamp, as a work of art. However, just because the initial idea behind it wasn't art-oriented doesn't mean that Duchamp didn't whole-heartedly embrace the wonderful uproar and contradictions it later acquired when becoming designated as art. The artwork was not intended to be displayed to the public and although the original had been lost, Duchamp readily assembled another to meet the demands of the public. The emphasis of this Ready-made, is not on the actual process or technique used...