Published on Saturday, July 2nd, 2011
Stark naked, a woman eats a kilo of honey, drinks a litre of red wine and with a razor blade carves a pentagram onto her stomach. Laying down on a cross made of ice for half an hour, all the while bleeding copiously. While it may found like a scene from a fetish club rather than an art gallery this is a piece Marina Abramovic performed more than once, the last time at the Guggenheim Museum in New York.
Serbian artist, recently known as the grandmother of performance art, Abramovic does not make “art” in the traditional sense of the word. Her work delves into the relationship between performer and audience, the restrictions of the human body, and the possibilities of the mind.
As one of the most fascinating performance artists, she enjoyed a great success at her exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York last spring. In fact it was the first time MoMA ever housed a complete exposition for a performance artist.
Later this month she will attend the Manchester International Festival in of The Life and Death of Marina Abramovic
, an autobiographical theatrical exhibition in which she will enact her own funeral. Co-produced by the Teatro Real in Madrid, directed by Robert Wilson and starring the film actor Willem Dafoe the work will feature several songs composed and performed by Antony Hegarty of Antony and the Johnsons.
It seems the piece will be both alluring and unsettling, including 12 people all playing Marina, as well as a little boy and moreover 12 dobermans and a white horse.