(London): Percy Lund, Humphries & Co., (1960). Octavo, measuring 9 x 6 inches: . Original green paper boards lettered in black and white dots. Text printed in black, orange, and blue. Illustrated with photolithographed annotations and vignettes, full-page drawings, diagrams, photographs of Duchamp’s work (including one folding plate), and musical notation. Appendices at rear. Inscribed presentation card from dedicatees Bill and Noma Copley laid in. Top two inches of front board sunned, lightest edgewear.
First edition of this English translation and typographical interpretation of Marcel Duchamp’s Green Box, a collection of ninety-three notes related to his ambitious sculpture The Bride Stripped Bare by her Bachelors, Even (The Large Glass), assembled between 1915 and 1923. A decade after the sculpture’s completion, Duchamp oversaw the first printed edition of Green Box, with each of his original notes meticulously reproduced in collotype, hand-torn to size, and issued loose. In 1960, pop artist Richard Hamilton produced this English translation of Green Box, using typography and graphic design to communicate the variety of the original collection of ephemera in a new format. Duchamp praised the result: “We are crazy about the book. Your labour of love has given birth to a monster of veracity and a crystalline [transubstantiation] of the French Green Box . . . The Bride must be blossoming ever more.” Laid into this copy is a presentation card from the edition’s dedicatees Bill and Noma Copley, printed with their Montlhéry address outside Paris, and inscribed in ink: “Greetings from Bill & Noma.” A longtime friend of Duchamp, Bill Copley was a noted American painter, art dealer and collector, whose circle also included Man Ray, Max Ernst, and René Magritte. A near-fine copy, with an excellent Surrealist association.