Artists: Peep Show

Marcel Duchamp lived his life with a touch of magic. He thrived on paradox, and invested contradiction with its own kind of inexplicable logic. His now-legendary Nude Descending a Staircase made him the succes de scandale of Manhattan's 1913 Armory Show. Duchamp responded by giving up painting. Next, he presented an unlikely series of "readymade" objects, including a snow shovel and a urinal, as artistic creations, and saw that idea take root. Then, having shaken the pillars of traditional esthetics, he abandoned art altogether. In 1923, not yet 40, Duchamp settled down...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!