The Bride and the Bachelors

Barbican Art Gallery

14 February – 9 June 2013

Reduced price entry with National Art Pass

£7 online or £8 on the door (standard entry charge is £12)

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An experimental exhibition that reveals the dynamic influence of Marcel Duchamp on the American avant-garde.

Word games, chance, paradoxes and contradictions, the artist Marcel Duchamp is considered the godfather of conceptual art. This exhibition looks at how his innovations inspired a generation of Americans, and in particular those modern masters who became the heavy hitters of the American avant-garde. Their revolutionary interpretations of his work resulted in a seismic shift in the direction of art in the 1950s.

Composer John Cage and the choreographer Merce Cunningham embraced Duchamp’s concepts of chance in dance and music. Painters Jasper Johns and Robert Rauschenberg incorporated the artist’s Dadaist spirit, becoming the leading figures of Abstract American art and the forerunners of Pop art

The exhibition is curated by the French artist Phillippe Parreno and offers a radical interpretation of each artist's work. 

Don't miss

Parreno’s reading of John Cage’s seminal work 4’33”, and performances of Cage's other compositions shown together with the ghostly sound of dance steps in an empty space.

Also on show are readymades by Duchamp, in particular his Bicycle Wheel made in 1913 and the infamous Fountain, 1917, the signed urinal that blurred the boundaries between life and art, and transformed the way we think about art ever since.

Venue information

Opening times

Art Gallery
Daily, 11am – 8pm (Thu & Fri until 9pm)

The Curve
Daily, 10am – 6pm (Thu & Fri until 9pm)

Closed 24-28 Dec and 1 Jan

"Art Fund" is the operating name of the National Art Collections Fund, a charity registered in England and Wales (209174) and Scotland (SC038331)