Exactly a year ago I got trapped in NYC. The eruption of the volcano in Iceland (‘Him-Whose-Name-Should-Not-Be-Spoken’, except by Icelanders) ‘forced’ me to enjoy another 10 days in the Big Apple! Since I love modern arts and therefore the MoMa, I took a full day to explore what the museum had to offer.
I happened to stumble up to Marina Abramović ‘s exposition ‘The Artist is Present’. Instantly she ranked herself in my list of favorite artists. Born in 1946 in Belgrade, Yugoslavia, she is named ‘the godmother of performance art’.
She is fearless, seductive, and crosses boundaries where she can. Her performances help you in finding the deepest, darkest, most vulnerable soft spot in your soul. She makes you feel emotional, whether it is happy, sad, disgusted or just uncomfortable while using her body as an object, freed from mental limits.
Some of her work is too much for most people, though I believe art is all about the emotional reactions of the audience. Good or bad. I’m not a fan of her cutting performances but her work goes from repeatedly walking into a pole to her sitting on a chair for hours staring at individuals. She makes people laugh and cry. On a table a bunch of objects are displayed of which the audience could pick objects they wanted to use towards her. Her clothes and hair were cut by the end of the performance. Someone took the gun and held it against her own head, another person stuck thorns of roses in her skin.
In the MoMa she made people take a seat in front of her. Some thought it was funny, others started crying, as you can see on this Thumblr ‘Marina Abramovic made me cry’.
Marina Abramovic’s work is not easy to find online. A couple of video’s illustrate her approach.
When I experienced her work, I just wanted to give her a big hug and convince her of the fact that not all people have anger towards her. It’s up to you to chose the people you want to share your life with. You better pick them carefully.
And I found this more recent video:
Nowadays Marina bought a building a couple of hours driving from NYC in which she is working on new pieces and where she stores her decors, drawings and attributes. Soon she will be traveling through Europe with Robert Wilson for a performance in ‘The Life and Death of Marina Abramovic’.