Bicycle Wheel

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Bicycle Wheel
ArtistMarcel Duchamp
LocationOriginal studio photograph. Shown to the left is the 2nd version of Bicycle Wheel, 1916-17. The original 1913 version and this 2nd version are lost. There are no known representations of the original 1913 Bicycle Wheel and Stool.[1]

Bicycle Wheel is a readymade from Marcel Duchamp consisting of a bicycle fork with front wheel mounted upside-down on a wooden stool.

In 1913 at his Paris studio Duchamp mounted the bicycle wheel upside down onto a stool, spinning it occasionally just to watch it. Later he denied that its creation was purposeful, though it has come to be known as the first of his readymades. "I enjoyed looking at it", he said, "just as I enjoy looking at the flames dancing in the fireplace". It was not until he began making readymades a few years later in New York that he decided Bicycle Wheel was also a readymade, and created the second version.[2]

The original version of 1913 and the second version of 1916-17 were both lost. Duchamp recreated yet another version of the sculpture in 1951. Bicycle Wheel is said to be the first kinetic sculpture.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ tout-fait, The Marcel Duchamp Studies Online Journal, vol 1, issue 3, Dec. 2000
  2. ^ Tomkins, Calvin: Duchamp: A Biography, Henry Holt and Company, Inc., 1996. ISBN 0-8050-5789-7
  3. ^ Artspeak, by Robert Atkins, 1990, Abbeville Press, ISBN 978-1-55859-127-1

External links[edit]

External videos
video icon Duchamp and the Ready-Mades, Smarthistory