L.H.O.O.Q. Shaved

Late Readymade
Original version, 1965
Original Version:

1965, Paris
playing card mounted on paper
8.8 x 6.2 cm

This Readymade is essentially a reproduction of Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa on a playing card mounted on a dinner invitation. L.H.O.O.Q. Shaved stands as a testament to Duchamp's strategic approach to his oeuvre of Readymades as an intricate and interdependent web of pieces. Buskirk cites this Readymade as a perfect example of Duchamp's awareness of placing his work within "a context that would give structure and meaning to his gestures" (Thoroughly 124). The scholar continues to explain that there is no intervention within the image of the Mona Lisa itself:

"By then, however, the playing card, even unadorned, was not simply a playing card; rather, it also functioned as a reference to Duchamp's earlier work, which was by then known through both publications and exhibitions... In 1965 Duchamp could play off that knowledge, obviously confident that the context he had helped to construct for the earlier appropriation would be inscribed as well in this later reappropriation" (125).

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