Friday, May 28, 2010

LIVE FROM NEW YORK - MOMA - Marina Abramovic

 New York – May 24 – MOMA – Marina Abramovic.   A pioneer of performance art, Yugoslavian artist, Marina Abramovic began using her own body as the subject, object and medium of her work in the early 1970s.  Since then she has viewed performance as a tool to visualize the here and now.  For Marina Abramovic, The Artist is Present, The Museum of Modern Art’s first performance retrospective, Abramovic performs every day the museum is open between March 14th and May 31st. This is probably  the best retrospective I have ever seen and was moved by it.


The Artist is Present.   The Artist is Present is Abramovic’s longest performance to date, visitors are encouraged to sit silently across from her for a duration of their choosing, becoming participants in the artwork rather than remaining spectators.  Though Abramovic is silent, maintaining a nearly sculptural presence with a fixed pose and gaze.  The performance is an invitation to engage in and complete a unique situation.  The Artist is Present distorts the line between everyday routine and ceremony: positioned in the vast atrium within a square of light, the familiar configuration of a table and chairs has been elevated to another domain.  Between 1981 and 1987 Abramovic and her then-collaborator Ulay (Uwe Laysiepen) performed Night-Sea Crossing, sitting motionless at a table in twenty-two locations around the world, The Artist is Present is in part a reinterpretation of that work, and with the involvement of the public it is generous, ever changing and unpredictable. The charged spaced between Abramovic and the other participant is the content of the work, a place where nothing-or possibly everything-happens.
Contessanally tip: click on any photo to enlarge it.

The hours.  Between March 14th and May 24th Abramovic had already sat in her hard back wooden chair for 716 hours and 30 minutes.

The retrospective: Marina Abramovic: The Artist is Present. On the sixth floor a chronological installation of Abramović’s work is included revealing different modes of representing, documenting, and exhibiting her ephemeral, time-based, and media-based works. 

The retrospective: Marina Abramovic: The Artist is Present. A live reinterpretation of the performance of Relation in Time, performed originally with Ulay in 1977, in Bologna at the Studio G7.   In this work Abramovic and Ulay sat back-to-back, motionless and joined by their hair, in one of their longest single performances.  The artists performed for sixteen hours without an audience – “winthin the limits of their own energy,” they wrote.   During the seventeenth hour they “used the energy of the audience” to complete the performance.
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