Duchamp has ratings and 19 reviews. Frank said: No book in a long while has made me think as deeply about art as has Calvin Tomkins’ excellent biogra. This revised edition of Calvin Tomkins’s Duchamp: A Biography arrives on the artist from the Time-Life Library of Art; The World of Marcel Duchamp appeared. Nearly everything about L.A. appealed to Ruscha. He wanted to live there, and he knew that the only thing he could be was an artist. By Calvin Tomkins.

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Thanks for telling us about the problem. CT Rirkrit is certainly one of the artists who is involved with the social aspects. There are many facts about his day to day life, but after while it gets boring. To him, the accumulation of critical interpretations over the years obscure the essential playfulness of the work, and he likes to whip Arturo Schwarz for taking a psychoanalytical approach, but surely he could have found a more worthy and interesting opponent.

Tomkins states he isn’t going to speculate about Duchamp’s interior life, and he sticks to his word. He had tomkinz acquaintance with every important artist of the century and was a subversive influence on them all. He wrote the Art World column from to It can be of no interest or importance at all.

A totally readable, casual set of interviews by someone who’s comfortable enough capvin Duchamp to call him out on some funny little b.

Tomkins drew from five-and- a-half hours of taped conversations with Duchamp for the new Badlands Unlimited-published book. Want to Read saving…. Duchamp is all about openings and contradictions and possibilities. No book in a long while has made me think as deeply about art as has Calvin Tomkins’ excellent biography of Marcel Duchamp. At the time he said it, he felt it was music tomkjns was doing the talking and the others were listening. When I started, there was no art coverage in the news magazines and there was no regular coverage, even in Time.


Introduced tomkinz to an entirely new and lasting, I hope, influence on my sensibility. Well, what if the two things are related? What I can say is that as someone who had a slim but strong appreciation for Duchamp’s work and knew almost nothing of his life and personality, I found this book to be readable, interesting, and insightful.

BM You wrote something in the introduction to your book Post- to Neo-: Forty-four years after their first conversation, Tomkins said what still stands out about Duchamp was his complicated nature.

A mistake that is made over and over again by people who are thinkers about Duchamp is that they try to figure out a system that explains him.

Dec 15, Megan Kirschenbaum rated it really liked it. The authoritative Biography on the original “non-artist”. David rated it really liked it Dec 02, I mean, you are not considered important at all.

I enjoyed this biography, because — even through the cold, hard stare of the art historian and critic — you can hear Tomkins’ awe and admiration for the man I feel is 20th century’s most important artist. Or given the fact that he himself continues to have such a strong influence, does that suggest continuity? In Duchamp, Tomkins has fuchamp a biographer’s greatest challenge — a subject of such wide ranging intellect that the biographer must himself possess great intelligence and imagination in order to grasp the implications of the ccalvin which he’s outlining.

This was so powerful, that art could be all these other things. John O’Toole rated it it was amazing Jan 17, But no revolution lasts forever. In some ways, art could have an influence on that.

File:Tomkins Calvin The World of Marcel – Monoskop

That is the work of art. Solid biography except for some minor New-Yorker-magazine-edited-by-Tina-Brown type gossip intrusions in the text. I attribute it to this thing, this stroke of luck, that I just went from one artist to the other in the beginning, and then discovered that they were all related in these different ways. I like the exhaustive biographical research put into this book, but Tompkins unabashed hero worship of Duchamp has been taken a bit too far, despite the long shadow Duchamp has cast upon art.


I could read it every day. I didn’t expect a deep artistic analysis and I got in spades what I expected – a bit of insight into the thinking of Duchamp and the human being he was. His attitude can be learned from, but the things he did cannot. Certainly, we no longer can think of art as something that hangs on the wall.

Talking Marcel Duchamp With Calvin Tomkins

He said at one point that the readymade is really a form of expressing the impossibility of defining art. Very readable biography that immerses you in the world Duchamp lived in and explains the way Etant Donne got made. Calvin Tomkins is simply a great writer. It came slowly, but it was a really major revolution. They can figure out new ways of living and existing with the resources at hand. I think I chose well but it is clear that no single book can contain Duchamp’s work and that I could easily benefit from reading several–which I will probably do.

I looked at several other books about Duchamp before choosing this one. It goes from the Marquis de Sade to technology, and he tkmkins so bright and smart and his mind is so alert that it could go off in a completely new direction.

Tomkjns craftsmanship was amazingly good, and he was willing to devote infinite time.

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