Duchamp and Dreier

Angeline, John, 2000/05/01, 2019/05/08

Dear Tout-Fait,

Congratulations on an exciting and generally brilliant issue! As a co-editor of an online arts journal (PART, http://web.gsuc.cuny.edu/dsc/part.html) I am impressed with what you have done.

One quibble — the Anastasi article about the Large Glass, while intriguing, unfortunately falls into the same wrongheaded cliches about Katherine Dreier and her relationship to Duchamp that the general literature has perpetuated for far too long. My doctoral dissertation on Dreier tries to present a more even-handed version of their relationship and it is a shame that an otherwise adventurous article would rely on as flippant a source as Tomkin’s biography and simply repeat its glib assertions.

Moreover, the correspondence between Dreier and Duchamp does reveal that the Glass was indeed accidentally broken, unbeknownst to both Duchamp and Dreier, while in storage/transit. Duchamp was in Europe at the time and in fact had to travel to the States expressly to repair the Glass.

The relationship to Jarry still intrigues. I just think it is time that art historians remembered to not sacrifice fact in the make of a theory.

Best Regards,

Dr. John Angeline
The Graduate Center at City University of New York

 

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