Modern sculptors 2 – R. Mutt’s Fountain (1917) and the Readymade
“Whether Mr Mutt with his own hands made the fountain or not has no importance. He CHOSE it. He took an ordinary article of life, and placed it so that its useful significance disappeared under the new title and point of view – created a new thought for that object.”
In 1965, Duchamp was interviewed about his readymade sculptures. According to him, what is the most important consideration for selecting a readymade? What do you think of his criteria?“There are three important points here: first, that the choice of object is itself a creative act. Secondly, that by cancelling the ‘useful’ function of an object it becomes art. Thirdly, that the presentation and addition of a title to the object have given it ‘a new thought’, a new meaning. Duchamp’s readymades also asserted the principle that what is art is defined by the artist. At the time, the readymade was seen as an assault on the conventional understanding not only of the status of art but its very nature.”
This is an additional video, hosted on YouTube.
ReferenceTate Art Dictionary ‘Readymade’
Modern Sculpture: An Introduction to Art History
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