Hirshhorn Premieres Marcel Duchamp Documentary

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A replica of “Fountain,” Duchamp’s still-controversial 1917 “readymade.”

A new documentary about revolutionary 20th-century painter, sculptor and conceptual artist Marcel Duchamp (1887–1968), “Marcel Duchamp: The Art of the Possible,” was premiered at the Hirshhorn Museum on Nov. 23.

The sold-out screening and talk helped launch a special Hirshhorn exhibition, “Marcel Duchamp: The Barbara and Aaron Levine Collection,” on view through Oct. 12, 2020. The exhibition features the recent gift of more than 50 major works, including more than 35 by Duchamp, promised to the museum by D.C.-based collectors Barbara and Aaron Levine.

Director Matthew Taylor, who lives in New York with his wife and producing partner Michelle, has made over 100 short films. Four new feature documentaries by the Taylors are currently in production. Matthew Taylor has also worked with ballet dancers to create contemporary multimedia installations and undertaken travel photography around the world.

As director, his vision was to bring Duchamp to a broader audience and present him as a guiding light in an increasingly technological world. While tracing the key moments of Duchamp’s career, “The Art of the Possible” demonstrates how the French-born artist, a pioneer of the Dada movement, transformed the direction of 20th- and 21st-century art. The film makes extensive use of excerpts from interviews that Taylor conducted over several years with a range of scholars and artists.

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