By Duchamp, Marcel; Moffitt, John Francis; Duchamp, Marcel
A desirable e-book demonstrating the impression of alchemy and esoteric traditions at the mature paintings of Marcel Duchamp
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Extra info for Alchemist of the avant-garde : the case of Marcel Duchamp
36 Swedenborg’s Heaven and Hell represents quintessential postmedieval esotericism in that it incorporates many of the themes and motifs that appear repeatedly in modern esoteric and art-theoretical texts. The basic occultist pattern endlessly repeats itself, regardless of explicit function, supposed doctrinal differences, or dates of publication. On the other hand, Swedenborgism is acknowledged by historians to have been an all-pervasive factor in early modernist cultural life in France. In a poem aptly titled “Correspondences” (ca.
65 We have yet another corollary in Paul Adam’s preface to Georges Vanor’s L’Art Symboliste (1889). As Adam then claimed, “the Age is evidently preparing itself for a new period, a period of force, one of a Science of the Consciousness and of a general felicity. ” Kandinsky’s geistige, a spiritual foundation for truly innovative art, is largely a paraphrase of published and widely discussed Symbolist texts, which in turn had an unmistakable functional afﬁnity with widely read apocalyptic texts like that of Éliphas Lévi.
As one troubled century merged into another, the new metaphysical systems were, naturally, reﬂective of similar ideological shifts apparent among most other classes of the European intelligentsia. 9 With perhaps different nomenclature, the self-inﬂating idea—the Artist as Priest and Prophet—is still very much with us. ”10 This earnest performance by a radical avant-garde artist of his self-appointed messianic vocation, at least within twentieth-century art, is now a largely conventional manouver.