Proto-performance artists

‘Augmented’ Mona Lisa (1882) by Sapeck

Sapeck (Eugène Bataille) (born in Mans in 1854) was a French protoperformance artist who was known to travel the streets with his head painted blue. In the first show of the Incoherents in 1882, he contributed an ‘augmented’ Mona Lisa (Mona Lisa smoking a pipe) that directly prefigures the famous Marcel Duchamp image L.H.O.O.Q. of 1919.

Speaking of Duchamp, Ombres Blanches recently wrote Duchamp’s Dahlia or The Man Ray Mystery, an essay on the possible inspiration of Duchamp’s Etant donnés by the Black Dahlia murder.