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Le Violon d'Ingres: Man Ray's Variations on Ingres, Deformation, Desire and de Sade

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Le Violon d'Ingres is a complex photograph that demonstrates Man Ray's long-standing admiration for Ingres, as well as his desire to mock tradition. Man Ray's distortion and deformation of the model's body engage Surrealist concepts of metamorphosis and formlessness, but they also belong to a larger context of fascination for Ingres's manipulations of anatomy during the interwar period, as seen in the writings of critics such as André Lhote. The revolutionary nature of Ingres's distortions of the female body had parallels in the social distortions found in the writings of Sade, whom Man Ray and his Surrealist colleagues deeply admired.
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Document Type: Original Article

Affiliations: Middlebury College

Publication date: 2000-12-01

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