Self-Portrait in Profile

Marcel Duchamp American, born France

Not on view

Marcel déchiravit—"Marcel tore this quickly"—reads the inscription of this work made for deluxe copies of Robert Lebel’s Sur Marcel Duchamp. Placing a specially fabricated zinc template of his silhouette against squares of origami paper, Duchamp tore 137 self-portraits by hand, one for each copy. The torn sheets were then mounted on velvet-covered paperboard and attached as frontispieces. Although The Met’s self-portrait is numbered differently than other examples from the deluxe edition, traces of reddish brown linen on the underside match that edition’s red linen case, indicating that it was likely detached from such a box. Self-Portrait in Profile became one of Duchamp’s best known late works, appearing in exhibition posters and inspiring homages by Jasper Johns and Ray Johnson.

Self-Portrait in Profile, Marcel Duchamp (American (born France), Blanville 1887–1968 Neuilly-sur-Seine), Cut and torn paper on velvet-covered board

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