Art Institute of HollywoodMarcel Duchamp:His Inspiration for Conceptual Art, and his Influence on Modern ArtEdmond P RishwainDavid DeanyModern ArtDecember 12, 201With introducing Fountain, Marcel Duchamp showed the world the first piece of conceptual art. In 1917, Duchamp turned the New York art society’s standard for what is considered art, and turned it upside down. He took an everyday item that wasn’t significant in any way, altered the perception and changed the way people looked at art forever. A magazine at the time, The Blind Man, co-edited by Duchamp, argued that “Whether Mr. Mutt with his own hands made the fountain or not lacks importance. He choose it. He took an ordinary article of life, placed it so that its useful significance disappeared under the new title and point of view- and created a new thought for that object.”(Jones, The guardian) The story of Duchamp’s Fountain is a popular story and inspiring but it is also fascinating to discover what inspired his concept of “ready mades” , and how he discovered the idea for Fountain, although it was not his first. The readymade was a new idea for art, rather than just an idle process for creating it. Looking at his background, and the progression of his artwork to develop the concepts that would continue to inspire artist today. Duchamp has inspired many famous artist to follow, and his influences are seen in works of art all over the world. His refusal to accept the standard for an established art system has pushed the concept of anti-hegemony. He arguably influenced the concepts of punk rock, he challenged norms of what was acceptable and pushed uncomfortable media to the masses. Duchamp was Born July 28, 1887, in Blainville-Crevon, France, to beginlooking at where his inspiration was gained, it is first important to understand his background, and his early artwork which are often overlooked.Duchamp was the youngest son, his father was a notary, and his grandfather was an artist, Marcel’s brother was also a cubist sculptor, and his other sibling were painters as well. From early age Marcel was introduced to art, his early artworks were nothing impressive, but not unlike many artist of the time such as Piet Mondrian. Duchamp eventually moved to Paris in 1906, just at the birth of modernism. Duchamp gained praise from critics for his painting, Nude descending a Staircase No 2 (1812). The piece depicted a narrow body in motion coming down a staircase, however when he sent the piece to America, he received outrage from critics who were not aware of the current trends from Europe. Duchamp created his first “readymade”, a spoked wheel sitting inside a metal fork fastened to a wooden stool. Although, at the time he had not invented the term. Duchamp enjoyed having the piece around the studio, Duchamp said ” To set the wheel turning was very soothing, very comforting, a sort of opening of avenues on other things, than the material life of every day , I enjoyed looking at it, just as I enjoy looking at the flames dancing in a fireplace.” (Jones, The Guardian ) The concept of the readymade is heavily influenced by the cubist obsession with solid items that were nearby. It was actually Picasso who first used real world items in his artwork. Duchamp didn’t form the concept of the readymade yet for the object in his studio, In fact, he only ever said the word in english, it was founded from his translation.When Duchamp arrived in America, he was unshackled “For a Frenchman, used to class distinctions, you had the feeling of what a real democracy could be” (Duchamp 1915). He quickly began to hang around emerging modern artist, Walter Arensberg, and Joseph Stella. Duchamp actually used the assistance of Arsenberd to create With Hidden Noise, a hollow ball of yarn sitting inside two plates, and a hidden object inside. Although, this was his first attempt at a readymade, he didn’t think about displaying it, it was a piece that hung in his studio. During the winter, in New York Duchamp was walking through a shop, and noticed a steel snow shovel, he purchase one and it was hung inside his studio. He wrote ” In Advance of Broken Arm, from Marcel Duchamp, 1915.” This was the beginning of the idea that readymades were born from the artist, rather than before, the concept of being by the artist. It wasn’t until 1917, when Duchamp was visiting The Mott iron works, he purchased a porcelain urinal that would be his first public “readymade.” He submitted the piece as artwork by “R Mutt” to the Society of Independent Artist. A group that he himself helped to create, with the idea of advocating fares and equal lines for all submissions. The group quickly rejected his piece against their own guidelines, because of its indencest nature. This was Duchamp attempt to test the art society, using anonymity to gauge the reaction of critics to conventional ideas without losing his reputation. Duchamp inspiration for Fountain was lone venture, he was working closely with other emerging Dada artist of the time, who were creating new piece that were non-objective. Duchamp was merely the most famous beach of his bold move to enter Fountain, hide behind his “R Mutt” , he successfully implemented his piece into something that caused him to alter the idea of artist and artwork.Duchamp created only thirteen “readymade” pieces over the course of his life. He was aware of the bias of his own taste into the artwork, and believed that limiting the amount of pieces would control his taste, something he believe was “the enemy of art.” (Duchamp 23) The readymade questioned art as an object, and was a threat to the established order. His defiance would inspire artist from the Neo-dada, and Pop art movement. The similarities between the different movements, is taking mass produced items and altering their perception and significance to have a new meaning. Artist like Andy Warhol, used the Campbell’s soup label and created art, in the same regard, that Duchamp used an Ordinary snow shovel, both used icon symbols. It’s important to understand that Duchamp didn’t create his readymades alone, in one enlightening moment, he pushed the status for what is considered art, and used his influence to create conceptual art, and change the established regards to perceiving art. Although he was the first, Artist today continue to push the concepts Duchamp believed into works of Art. He was an inspiration to threaten the status-quo and t0 view the world, and the items around you with significance in everything..Works CitedDuchamp, Marcel, et al. Marcel Duchamp, Man Ray: 50 years of alchemy. Sean Kelly Gallery, 2004.Gayford, Martin. “Duchamp’s Fountain: The practical joke that launched an artistic revolution.” The Telegraph, Telegraph Media Group, 16 Feb. 2008, www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/art/3671180/Duchamps-Fountain-The-practical-joke-that-launched-an-artistic-revolution.html.Jones, Jonathan. “Jonathan Jones on how Duchamp’s urinal revolutionised modern culture.” The Guardian, Guardian News and Media, 8 Feb. 2008, www.theguardian.com/books/2008/feb/09/art.Kuspit, Donald . “A Critical History of 20th-Century Art.” Artnet Magazine – A Critical History of 20th-Century Art, ArtNet, 17 Mar. 2006, www.artnet.com/magazineus/features/kuspit/kuspit3-17-06.asp.Tate. “‘Fountain’, Marcel Duchamp, 1917, replica 1964.” Tate, www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/duchamp-fountain-t07573.