Adam et Eve; tableau vivant

Man Ray :: Ciné-Sketch; Adam and Eve (Marcel Duchamp and Bronia Perlmutter), 1924. Gelatin silver print, on carte postale, printed in the 1930s. | src Christie’s & Philadelphia Museum of Art (Philamuseum)

In 1924 Francis Picabia asked Bronia to participate in a production, Ciné Sketch, that he and René Clair were putting on after the Relache ballet on New Year’s Eve. Bronia agreed, and she and Marcel Duchamp appeared nude —Duchamp did have a strategically placed fig leaf— in a living tabloid of Lucas Cranach’s Adam and Eve, which Man Ray photographed.

Ciné Sketch (1924) was a theatrical diversion conceived by Francis Picabia and René Clair, in which Marcel Duchamp and the Jewish-Polish model Bronia Perlmutter mime the figures of Adam and Eve in a tableau vivant of the Temptation after a painting by Cranach. Ciné-Sketch was performed only once, at the conclusion of Relache (by Ballets Suédois) at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées on New Year’s Eve 1924.

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