Marcel déchiravit—"Marcel tore this quickly"—reads the inscription of this work made for deluxe copies of Robert Lebel’s Sur Marcel Duchamp. Placing a specially fabricated zinc template of his silhouette against squares of origami paper, Duchamp tore 137 self-portraits by hand, one for each copy. The torn sheets were then mounted on velvet-covered paperboard and attached as frontispieces. Although the Metropolitan’s self portrait is numbered differently than other examples from the deluxe edition, traces of reddish brown linen on the underside matches that edition’s red linen case, indicating that it was likely detached from such a box. Self Portrait in Profile became one of Duchamp’s best known late works, appearing in exhibition posters and inspiring homages by Jasper Johns and Ray Johnson.
self portraitpapertorn and pasted paperon velvet covered paperboarddada