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Thought, and gesture at La Verrière

The artistic legacy of Marcel Duchamp, artisan

La Verrière presents the first of a new series of exhibitions entitled Thought, and gesture, inspired by the figure and work of Marcel Duchamp. The first show explores technical, artisan skills and their importance in the manual work of contemporary artists seeking to give material form to their ground-breaking ideas and approaches.

Fondation d'Entreprise Hermès - Thought, and gesture at La Verrière
© courtesy Hans-Peter Feldmann et galerie Martine Aboucaya

Marcel Duchamp (1887-1968) was a leading figure in 20th-century art, noted for his pioneering vision of the object as art, in his ‘ready-mades’. Duchamp’s bravura conceptual ‘gestures’ were complemented by carefully-crafted pieces produced over long periods of time, demanding meticulous skill and attention to detail. His major work, The Bride Stripped Bare by her Bachelors, Even (also known as the Large Glass) was declared ‘definitively unfinished’ by the artist after eight years in the making.    

These ‘thoughts and gestures’ are explored by curator and critic Guillaume Désanges in a new, two-year series at La Verrière: works of patience, precision and skilled expertise. The programme takes a fresh look at Duchamp’s legacy in contemporary art. 

The first group show highlights key themes to be explored later, in solo exhibitions of specially-commissioned work. Works by Duchamp accompany contemporary pieces highlighting their artists’ ‘personal engagement with artisanship as the embodiment of thought at work’, in Désanges’s words. Participating artists have been invited to contribute a personal work based on assiduous handiwork and minute attention to detail, created in private, in their own time, showing a quasi-obsessive concern with technical dexterity. 

Désanges’s inaugural show as curator of La Verrière features Corey McCorkle, Anna Maria Maiolino, Hubert Duprat and Hans-Peter Feldmann, in dialogue with Duchamp, the celebrated author of the Box-in-a-suitcase series.

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La Verrière, Brussels, Belgium 50 boulevard de Waterloo, Bruxssels 1000 Monday - Saturday, 11 am - 6 pm Free admission: from 20/04/2013 to 13/07/2013


Curator: Guillaume Désanges