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October 2002 Issue
The Geographical Review
October 2002, Vol. 92 (4), pp. 477-502
MARCEL DUCHAMPíS ART AND THE GEOGRAPHY OF MODERN PARIS
Keywords: Marcel Duchamp, landscape, modern art, monuments, Paris, readymade sculpture, urban geography.
Modern artist Marcel Duchampís concept of the readymade remains influential though controversial. I propose a new interpretation of the readymades as a coherent series of works that re-create the landscape of Paris in the artistís New York City studio. Using techniques that parallel the conceptual and visual transformations of space performed by cartography and by landscape painting, Duchamp created a personal, monumental, and three-dimensional "map" by replacing Parisian monuments with small-scale objects. The readymades thus expand on the quest of modern artists for innovative ways to represent landscape and, at the same time, offer geographers new ways of seeing landscape.