Typeready-made LocationIsrael Museum Created1915 GenreSite-specific art
SimilarMarcel Duchamp artwork, Artwork at Museum of Modern Art, Dada artwork
Boris with merzbow akirame flower prelude to a broken arm
Prelude to a Broken Arm (En prévision du bras cassé in French) is a 1915 sculpture by Dada artist Marcel Duchamp that consisted of a regular snow shovel with the title and "from Marcel Duchamp 1915" painted on the handle. An antidote to what he called "retinal art", this sculpture was the second of a series of sculptures that he called "ready-mades", the most famous of which is his 1917 Fontaine (Fountain). At the time, the term "ready-made" referred to manufactured goods as opposed to handmade goods, but Duchamp used the term to describe "an ordinary object elevated to the dignity of a work of art by the mere choice of an artist". The original was hung from a wire in the studio and has since been lost. It is believed that the shovel was mistaken for an ordinary snow shovel and was removed to move snow off the sidewalks of Chicago. A replica of the sculpture is on display at the Yale University Art Gallery in New Haven, Connecticut.