The following letter was published in Affectionately, Marcel: The Selected Correspondence of Marcel Duchamp, by Francis M. Naumann and Hector Obalk Ludlon (2000, Ludlon Press, Ghent). It pertains to Katherine Dreier’s decision to withdraw pieces from the Museum of Modern Art exhibition Fantastic Art: Dada and Surrealism. I. Marcel Duchamp To Katherine S. Dreier 9 February, 1937, Paris11 Rue Larrey 9th Feb 37
Bombshell all right.It is difficult to picture the whole thing from my peaceful Paris ___ but your statement clarified the situation for the public.Also it will make the public more conscious of the importance of what is going on ____Comparing with our past times —- the Matisse, the cubist and futurist episodes —- it is always good for general recognition to stir the stew which is generally created by such episodes.As for Man Ray, he does not want to do any further move giving unnecessary publicity to the museum.I still think that criticizing for or against is of equal value, meaning that the amount of publicity is proportional to the number of lines written for as well as against.—- The thing criticized always profits by any criticism (at least along the public lines).As long as you made it a clear statement it is perfect___If it becomes a fight there should be a winner____And the win has no more to do with right or wrong ____it is a gamble.All this please keep to yourself and let me know the further developments____I received the 300 francs which I gave to Madeleine___Many thanks.And now get ready for your trip___AffecteusementDee
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