Monday, April 26


Performance art has been on our minds ever since the incredible Marina Abramovic retrospective opened at MoMA. It's the biggest exhibition of performance art the MoMA has put on in its history. Below are photos from Marina Abramovic's original performance pieces, some of which were re-created for the MoMA exhibition.

We've also been revisiting some memorable performances from Tehching Hsieh, Joseph Beuys, and Matthew Barney.


Nude with Skeleton (2002-5)

Skin and bones.

Rest Energy (1980)

Taut bow and arrow aimed at Marina's heart.
Perfect weight distribution maintains tension.
The accelerated heartbeats measured.

Imponderabilia (1977)

A fleshy entrance.


Tehching Hsieh is another wildly influential performance artist who says his one-year-long performances are about "wasting time and freethinking". Maybe so, but his performances are also about entangling art and life, poetically exposing how we relate to one another, how we struggle, adapt.

Art/Life: One Year Performance 1983-4 (Rope Piece)

Hsieh and collaborator Linda Montano were tied together by an eight foot rope. For one year.

Read about the how their relationship evolved over the course of the year and how they think it was easier than actually being "tied" to a bad job or unhealthy relationship.


German artist Joseph Beuys spent his first trip to America in a East Broadway Gallery with a coyote.

I Like America and America Likes Me (1974)


Blood of Two (2009)

More recently, Matthew Barney and Elizabeth Peyton collaborated on this ceremonious performance on the Greek Island Hydra, involving local fisherman unveiling artwork from a sarcophagus submerged in the sea.

Not as gritty and personal as the performance art in the 70's/80's, but still mesmerizing.

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