Marcel Duchamp

Hans Hoffmann
Photograph, 1912

David Fleiss, courtesy Gallerie 1900–2000, Paris

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While living in Munich during the summer of 1912, Duchamp received a request from the critic Guillaume Apollinaire for a photographic portrait for the book Les Peintres Cubistes, which included essays on Duchamp and his brother Raymond Duchamp-Villon. In response, Duchamp turned to the Munich-based portrait photographer Hans Hoffmann.

Duchamp’s self-enforced isolation at this turning point in his career is reflected in his distant expression and the austerity of his formal attire. A quarter-century later, Hoffmann’s photograph would be featured in Man Ray’s Portrait of Marcel Duchamp Overlaid with a Photogram of the Glissière.

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Listen to co-curator Anne Goodyear discuss this image: