On Marcel Duchamp’s Prière de Toucher

German to English translation of the text ‘La Prière – The Prayer’ by Katharina Neuburger for the catalogue published to accompany the symposium Marcel Duchamp: Die Erfindung der Gegenwart (Marcel Duchamp: The Invention of the Present), hosted by the Staatliches Museum Schwerin in April 2019.

March 2019

Excerpt from Translation (German to English) of Text by Dr Katharina Neuburger

A label with the words ‘Prière de toucher’[Please Touch], which was applied by Duchamp, adorns the back of the deluxe edition of the exhibition catalogue Le Surréalisme en 1947. The choice of the particularly polite expression ‘prière de’ is certainly no accidental reference to ‘la prière’ – the prayer. In the ironic artistic gestures of Duchamp’s late works, religious exaltation and sensual exaggeration enter into a particular dialogue with sensual motifs.

For the Symposium Marcel Duchamp at the Staatliches Museum Schwerin
Photos: Burckhardt+Partner

Anna Dorothea Ker