“I had experienced absolute freedom—I had felt that my body was without boundaries, limitless; that pain didn’t matter, that nothing mattered at all—and it intoxicated me.”
In 2010, more than 750,000 people stood in line at Marina Abramović’s MoMA retrospective for the chance to sit across from her and communicate with her nonverbally in an unprecedented durational performance that lasted more than 700 hours. This celebration of nearly fifty years of groundbreaking performance art demonstrated once again that Marina Abramović is truly a force of nature.
The child of Communist war-hero parents under Tito’s regime in postwar Yugoslavia, she was raised with a relentless work ethic. Even as she was beginning to build an international artistic career, Marina lived at home under her mother’s abusive control, strictly obeying a 10 p.m. curfew. But nothing could quell her insatiable curiosity, her desire to connect with people, or her distinctly Balkan sense of humor—all of which informs her art and her life. The beating heart of Walk Through Walls is an operatic love story—a twelve-year collaboration with fellow performance artist Ulay, much of which was spent penniless in a van traveling across Europe—a relationship that began to unravel and came to a dramatic end atop the Great Wall of China.
Marina’s story, by turns moving, epic, and dryly funny, informs an incomparable artistic career that involves pushing her body past the limits of fear, pain, exhaustion, and danger in an uncompromising quest for emotional and spiritual transformation. A remarkable work of performance in its own right, Walk Through Walls is a vivid and powerful rendering of the unparalleled life of an extraordinary artist.
Walk Through Walls 4.7 out of 5based on
More than 1 year ago
I am too fearful to relate to Marina but I was taken with her direct no-frills style. A product of bleak war-torn Belgrade, she alchemized all her suffering into a lifelong search for truth, connection and beauty. It was amazing to read of her unwavering commitment to art, performance, learning, and teaching. She traveled the globe to expand her awareness and gain self mastery. She had deep and lasting connections to many fascinating people including two ultimately heartbreaking long love afffairs. Past 70 now, she shows no signs of letting up or giving up. This is unique and inspirational, especially at such a cynical point in history.
More than 1 year ago
Just a series of thoughts, set with chronological tales that factor into developing the story of M.A.
Definitely a keeper art-book, she’s a spirit in the art world for a reason, and a lot of it is presence.
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