Duchamp and Stein rely heavily on illusion to move audiences from the constraints of conventional art to a modernist mindset of viewing art for what it is instead of a representation of something else. These two artists accomplish this idea through the speed and rhythm contained in each work, unlikely associations made between the elements of each piece, and the creation of multiplicity and simultaneity within each work.
Duchamp's Nude Descending a Staircase No.2 maintains a constant speed through the illusion of movement. Duchamp used the technique of overlaying phases of the movement of a figure descending a staircase to create angles that do not present a still-life frame of a figure posed in one specific movement, but instead create a scene of constant movement that is not halted within the frame of the painting. Similarly, in Stein's "Tender Buttons," she creates a rhythm within the text by overlapping disconnected words and thoughts into separate sections. This technique maintains a stable pace for the reader, although it never moves out of the present moment. Stein's writing does not contain a past or a future; it maintains a tone and speed that do not move out of the present time. In the section... [continues]
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