Abramovic Marina & Ulay

Publié le par Olivier Lussac


From 1976 to 1988, Marina Abramovic and Ulay undertook a rigorous artistic collaboration, during which they produced works in performance, video and life-size Polaroid photography.
As seminal participants in the European body art/performance movement, they began their collaboration in Amsterdam with Relation Work, a series of provocative, ritualistic performances that were often documented on video. In these highly charged, durational events, they investigated male and female energies as a dialogue of body and self, testing the limits of mental and physical endurance, risk, and identity: They sat motionless, back to back, hair tied together, for seventeen hours; screamed into each other's open mouths until hoarse; repeatedly ran at high speed and collided. As in later photographic works, their performance strategy was to use the body as art-making material, presenting themselves as art objects to explore and transcend the physical and psychological limitations of the self.
From 1981 to 1986, they presented Nightsea Crossing, an epic performance of motionless meditation and concentration, in ninety sites around the world. With City of Angels (1983), they began a series of ethnographic videotapes that extended the intensified vision and temporality of their metaphysical performances. Through symbolic renderings of time, place and people, they attempted to capture the mythic essence of specific cultures. "To have the most original moment of a culture presented as a living being," as Ulay stated, they created tableaux vivants, in a vivid translation of their performance principles to video.
 In 1988, as their final artistic collaboration before pursuing individual projects, they completed a walk along the Great Wall of China, with Ulay starting alone from its western end, Abramovic from the east.
Marina Abramovic was born in 1946 in Belgrade, Yugoslavia, where she studied at the Academy of Fine Arts. Ulay (F. Uwe Laysiepen) was born in 1943 in Solingen, Germany. Their work is the subject of several publications, including Marina Abramovic and Ulay: Relation Work and Detour (1980). In 1986 they received the Polaroid Video Art Award. Their collaborative works have been widely exhibited internationally, at festivals and institutions including the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Venice Biennale; Paris Biennale; Documentas 6 and 7, Kassel, Germany; Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; Kolnischer Kunstverein, Cologne; De Appel, Amsterdam; The Tate Gallery, London; Kunstmuseum, Dusseldorf; Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C.; and The New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York. Abramovic and Ulay both live in Amsterdam.

From 1976 to 1988, Marina Abramovic and Ulay undertook a rigorous artistic collaboration. Seminal participants in the European body art and performance movements, they created a series of provocative, ritualistic performances entitled Relation Work. In these highly charged events, they engaged in a dialogue of the body and the self, testing the limits of mental and physical endurance, risk, and male and female identities.

Performance Anthology (1975-1980)  1975-1980, 4:16 hr, b&w, sound
Program 1. Four Performances by Abramovic  1975-76, 60 min, b&w, sound
Program 2. Action in 14 predetermined sequences by Ulay  30 min, b&w, sound Program 3. 14 Performances -- Relation Work  1976-80, 2:46 hr, b&w and color, sound
Collected Works  1975-86, 8:58 hr, b&w and color, sound
Performance Anthology (1975-1980)  1975-1980, 4:16 hr, b&w, sound
Modus Vivendi (1979-1986)  1979-1986, 2:07:03 hr, color, sound
Continental Videoseries (1983-1986)  1983-1986, 2:35:31 hr, b&w and color, sound
SSS  1989, 6 min, color, sound
Abramovic, Marina. Marina Abramovic: Artist Body. Performances 1969 -- 1998. Milan, Italy: Charta, 1998. With texts by Velimir Abramovic, Jan Avgikos, Chrissie Iles, Thomas McEvilley, Hans Ulrich Obrist, Bojana Pejic, Toni Stooss, Thomas Wulffen.

Abramovic, Marina and Ulay. Relation Work and Detour. Amsterdam: Idea Books, 1980.

Abramovic, Marina and Germano Celant. Marina Abramovic: Public Body. Milan, Italy: Charta, 2001.

Iles, Chrissie, ed. Marina Abramovic: Objects, Performance, Video, Sound. Oxford: Museum of Modern Art, 1995.

Publié dans Biographies

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