The concept for A Tribute to Marcel Duchamp came into fruition when Fountain Art Fair co-founder Johnny Leo came to Miguel and proposed to him that he do a tribute piece as homage to Marcel Duchamp's Nude Descending a Stair Case–– a painting you learn about in every 20th century art history class, it is considered a modernist classic. In 1913, the painting was considered "scandalously radical," a perfect piece to honor for the 100th anniversary of the Armory Show, especially because of Fountain's DIY, alternative spirit and for the simple fact that this year and last Fountain has taken place in 69th Regiment Armory, the same building as the original Armory Show 100 years ago.
At the top of the staircase projected Nude Gold by Australian based videographer Dru Blumensheid. Here, the nude is floating really rather than descending, but the video's editing closely resembles the contorted body of Duchamp's Cubist subject, echoing the mechanical portrayal of the figure in the painting. Ovalle's futuristic, large-scale sculptures give the installation and tribute relevance not only to today, but also to the future of art making. When so many artists are using laser machinery to create sculptures like these, Ovalle's work is painstakingly handmade.
|Original layout denied due to fire hazards.|
Once again, due to fire codes, viewers were unable to walk up the stairs, but as you stood in front of the staircase, the eyes were immediately met by the video at top. In using a myriad of interpretations and techniques, Miguel Ovalle "seeks to reveal the inner psyche of the human condition. His steadfast approach defines his meticulous attention for detail." The staircase becomes a bridge, a pathway and didactic conversation between the viewer, the sculptures, and the nude descending.