The Large Glass title


The title as such, suggests what is called in French " un effeuillage ", and it is beyond any doubt that sexuality is one of its dimensions. 

But, as I attempted to suggest above it is not that much a lady - might she be a sister - who is stripped bare in the Large Glass, but rather the realityThe real reality, the native reality. Reality I mean, before it is thought. And also of course what happens to reality when it is thought. In a very comparable manner, all well considered, to what Hegel does in "La Phénoménologie de L'esprit ".   

And yes, it is possible to say - at first - that the Large Glass is about the sort of knowledge you need to:   
1 - now how the Bride looks like   
2 - let Nature draw the consequences of it as regards propagation of the species.   

And it is more or less the only sort of knowledge that Nature requires us to have as regards the movement of knowledge, and it is sufficient for us to persevere into it. Let it be used, and then what we were not able to know in the course of our life, will ultimately be known by our descendants as time passes (although sometimes after really many years). Depending on this condition that they also make use of the same fundamental magical recipe.   

And this is why knowledge of the opposite sex remains the basic objective of this major epistemological effort to which children are confronted.   
And I still remeber the amazing complexity of the drawings we used to make, when as young boys, we attempted to get a representation of how girls were built. And I must say, that all things considered, it was not that far from the complexity of the Large Glass itself.   
And I also remember of these incredibly complicated paths though which the male fluid was joining the female unknown, which we used to fervently draw in the dust.   
So that I never happened to doubt that Duchamp had included a humoristic reference to this heroic period of the infantile epistemology into the improbable mechanisms of the Large Glass.   

But well, were things not to get further, either because this interpretation is prolongated to the ultimate degrees of esoterism, or more simply due to this remark, that a friend of mine made once which a smile - and what a smile she has ! - that painters only ever become painters because they have this passion to make drawings of bare ladies, then nothing would have been said that would not be also true of software engineers of of plumbers.   
Courbet once showed us "The Origin of the World", and no one will add to it.   


In 1968, Duchamp, precisely, reworked in a sketch "Femme aux bas blancs ", a work by Courbet and added a bird to it.   
Then, as nobody seemed to think of commenting on this addition, he said: "this bird is bizarre indeed, and it is a hawk too, which allows a play on words ; this way, it is possible to see the true and the false"  
This because the French word for hawk is "faucon" (falcon) which sounds like "false cunt". Hence Duchamp's conclusion...   

Where may be seen that by doing this, he added a bit to "This is not a pipe" by Magritte.   

As a matter of fact, Duchamp's conclusion adds perspective to what Magritte fingers. Because Courbet's work of course, is not the true cunt either. So that the hawk says "false cunt" just as Courbet's work should say "false cunt" to any viewer. And so that ordinary perspective itself is also fingered as a lie. But the movement introduced by Duchamp's play on words, fingers that our representation is, as regards reality, in the same relationship as words in a play on words. In other terms, not much more than a chance, or more precisely said, in the best cases a coincidence  

The example above gives a hint of how improbable indeed may be that Duchamp, who spend notably more time on playing chess than on women, might have designed the Large Glass only as a metaphor of the sexual act.  


Stripping yourself bare, yes. But with Art ! 

....more time on playing chess than... 
"Duchamp came back to Paris in 1927, and on the 8th of june, he married Lydie Levassor-Sarrazin. This marriage, which may almost be considered as a dadaist joke arranged by Picabia, only lasted a few months - and Duchamp's activity as regards playing chess probably contributed to the final break. Man ray writes that "Duchamp spent most of the only week they spent together in studying chess problems, and his wife, being at a hell what to do, woke up one night as he was sleeping, and glued the chess pawns on the chess board. They divorced three months later" "  
- Arturo Schwarz in  "La Mariée mise à nu chez Marcel Duchamp même " -Arturo Schwarz - Page 81] 

"La chose en soi, les bas aussi..."