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‘About, by or of Marcel Duchamp’ exhibition at Hauser & Wirth Zurich

Hauser & Wirth Publishers Headquarters, Rämistrasse 5, 8001 Zurich From 6 May to 2 July 2022 Opening: Thursday 5 May 2022, 5 - 8 pm

Marcel Duchamp signing the labels EAU & GAZ À TOUS LES ÉTAGES for the deluxe edition of Sur Marcel Duchamp at the Trianon Press offices, Paris, September 23, 1958 Photograph by Richard Lusby

Courtesy Marcel Duchamp Archives, Paris

‘About, by or of Marcel Duchamp’, an exhibition set up by fluid editions at Hauser & Wirth Publishers Headquarters in Zurich, illuminates the journey to resurrect the critically acclaimed first monograph and catalogue raisonné of legendary artist Marcel Duchamp. After being out of print for nearly 60 years, Hauser & Wirth Publishers released the carefully designed facsimile of the historic publication last November.

Re-creating a title that was fabricated more than 60 years ago required specialists; fluid, the curatorial-design studio of Margrit Brehm and Axel Heil, led this effort. Through a selection of rare documents, magazines, books, editions and never previously exhibited ephemera from the fluid archives and the collection of Bastian D. van der Velden, ‘About, by or of Marcel Duchamp’ offers unique access to the multifaced world of Marcel Duchamp and his peers and tells the ‘making of’ story of the facsimile edition.

‘Marcel Duchamp’ became the go-to book on the legendary artist for many decades following its publication in late 1959, when editions in French and English were simultaneously released. This iconic title is the culmination of many years of Duchamp’s collaboration with its author, art historian and critic Robert Lebel. To this day, the book’s texts, which include chapters authored by Duchamp, H.P. Roché, and André Breton, remain just as relevant and impactful, as does Duchamp’s book design.

Hauser & Wirth Publishers reanimates ‘Marcel Duchamp’with its faithful reproduction of the 1959 Grove Press edition alongside Jean-Jacques Lebel, Robert Lebel’s son, and Association Marcel Duchamp, representing the artist’s estate.

The facsimile of the historic edition is presented in a slipcase with a supplement edited by Jean-Jacques Lebel and Association Marcel Duchamp. The supplement features archival material and texts that explore the relationship between Duchamp and Robert Lebel, consider the critical reception of the book, and extend the narrative of Duchamp’s community, life and work that began in the monograph. As contributor Michael Taylor writes, the original publication signified a ‘sea change in the artist’s receptivity to critical interpretation.’

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