Nude Descending a Staircase, No. 2 (1912) by Marcel DUCHAMP

Nude Descending a Staircase, No

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TitleNude Descending a Staircase, No. 2
ArtistMarcel DUCHAMP
MediumOil on Canvas
Dimensions89 x 146 cm
Art MovementCubism
Current LocationPhiladelphia Museum of Art
Location Created France

About Nude Descending a Staircase, No. 2

Marcel Duchamp’s Nude Descending a Staircase No.2 is a seminal artwork in modernist history that challenged traditional representations of the human form in motion. Considered a Modernist masterpiece, it is known for its innovative depiction of the human body that expands our perception of motion and challenges conventional beauty standards. First presented at the Salon des Indépendants in Paris in 1912, it was rejected by the Cubists for being too Futurist.

Nude Descending a Staircase No.2 caused controversy at the 1913 Armory Show in New York and was met with criticism from both European and American art scenes. Rather than depicting a static nude figure, Duchamp aimed to portray motion as his central subject, an innovation that altered how artists created and viewers looked at artwork. The painting has often been described as a “success of scandal” because of its unconventional representation, particularly its portrayal of nudity.

Despite initial criticisms, today the painting is widely regarded as an iconic Modernist classic held by numerous prominent museums and arts collections worldwide. Duchamp’s Nude Descending A Staircase No.2 has played an essential role in shaping modern art practices around representations of movement and challenging long-held expectations about what constitutes meaningful art content or subject matter; moreover, it offers insights into the fluidity between different time periods within visual culture history—an early-twentieth-century work still integral today as inspiration for contemporary creators across multiple mediums who seek to explore ideas relating to expressionism or abstraction through experimental forms wherein new facets emerge beyond typical boundaries dictated by conventionality or traditionality alike

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