Rrose Sélavy – (Marcel Duchamp) Previous Next


Style: Dadaism

Topic: Women

Technique: Oil

Rrose Sélavy, or Rose Sélavy, was one of the pseudonyms of artist Marcel Duchamp. The name, a pun, sounds like the French phrase "Eros, c'est la vie", which translates to English as "eros, that's life". It has also been read as "arroser la vie" ("to make a toast to life"). Sélavy emerged in 1921 in a series of photographs by Man Ray of Duchamp dressed as a woman. Through the 1920s Man Ray and Duchamp collaborated on more photos of Sélavy. Duchamp later used the name as the byline on written material and signed several creations with it. Duchamp used the name in the title of at least one sculpture, Why Not Sneeze, Rose Sélavy?. The sculpture, a type of readymade called an assemblage, consists of an oral thermometer, a couple dozen small cubes of marble resembling sugar cubes inside a birdcage. She also appears on the label of Belle Haleine, Eau de Voilette, a 1921 readymade that is a perfume bottle in the original box. Duchamp also signed his film Anemic Cinema (1926) with the Sélavy name.



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