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Marina Abramović’s Controversial Exhibit Forces Visitors To Pass Through Nude Models

The recreation of Marina Abramovic's iconic 'Imponderabilia' at her exhibition where visitors pass through two nude individuals for entry.

Edited By : Mayank Kasyap | Updated: Sep 25, 2023 17:22 IST
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A visitor entering to Marina Abramovic's exhibit at London's Royal Academy of Art. (Photo Credit: Royal Academy of Art)
A visitor entering to Marina Abramovic's exhibit at London's Royal Academy of Art. (Photo Credit: Royal Academy of Art)

London: A provocative and highly anticipated exhibition dedicated to the extraordinary career of renowned artist Marina Abramović is set to challenge visitors at the Royal Academy of Arts in London. In a bold artistic move, attendees will need to traverse between two nude models to experience this groundbreaking showcase.

The artistic journey of Marina Abramović

Marina Abramović, a distinguished artist at the age of 76, boasts an illustrious five-decade career as a conceptual and performance artist. Her influence extends to some of the world’s premier art institutions, including the Académie des Beaux-Arts in Paris and the Berlin University of the Arts. In 2007, she established her own institute to champion the cause of performance art.

The Royal Academy reveres Marina Abramović as an “art world icon” and a “performance art pioneer.” Her work is a testament to her ability to challenge the boundaries of the human body and psyche over half a century.

The retrospective exhibition

This groundbreaking retrospective, featuring new interpretations of her seminal performances, opens its doors on Saturday and continues until January 1 at the Royal Academy. The exhibition includes historical works presented through archival materials alongside recreated or reimagined pieces like “Imponderabilia.”

Also Read: Who Is Marina Abramovic? Ukraine’s Ambassador Linked To ‘Spirit Cooking’

Recreating Imponderabilia’s notoriety

“Imponderabilia,” originally performed by the Serbian artist in 1977 during her collaboration with the late German artist Ulay, stands as a highlight of the exhibit. The performance places a nude man and woman stoically within the confines of a door frame, with mere inches separating them. Visitors must squeeze through this challenging passage.

Bold performances

Throughout the exhibition, two models will faithfully reenact this one-hour performance between four to six times daily, as revealed by the Royal Academy. Multiple live performances are integrated into the exhibition, offering an intimate and transformative experience for attendees. For those preferring an alternative entrance, an option is available.

The performers tasked with bringing “Imponderabilia” and other works to life have been meticulously cast and trained by the Marina Abramović Institute, an essential partner in this groundbreaking exhibition.

A transformative experience

As the Royal Academy aptly notes, live performance art can be both startling and intimately transformative. For Marina Abramović, it possesses the unique power to evoke change and introspection.

Visitors to the exhibition are encouraged to experience firsthand the performances of “Imponderabilia,” “Nude with Skeleton,” “Luminosity,” and “The House with the Ocean View” as part of this extraordinary retrospective.

 

First published on: Sep 24, 2023 11:30 PM IST

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