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Perception of Performance Art
Marina Abramović is present



​The first book in Russia on performance art explores the fundamental issues of the genre and the peculiarities of its public, personal, and professional perception, referring to the seven years of international field studies and works of Marina Abramović, one of the key figures in the contemporary art world.


Having changed the audience’s role and the general public’s understanding of immaterial art’s boundaries and languages, the medium of performance makes the spectator an accomplice and continues to raise the issues of physicality, time, space, taboo, boredom, nakedness, identity, empathy, and fear.


In contemporary culture, the term “performance” is used in a variety of ways and contexts, sometimes controversially. Questions about the nature of performance art and the specifics of its perception are equally relevant to the general public and the professional community.

Marina Abramović has played an important role in the establishment and popularization of classic performance. For almost fifty years, she has used the human body and mind to create artworks, defining performance using two key criteria—“energy dialogue” and “charismatic space”—and endowing contemporary works with new functions. “I so tire of seeing people walk quickly through a gallery, run by a few works of art and walk out the door in five seconds with their cell phone in their hand as they tweet about what they’ve just seen... I believe we need to reclaim time. Long-duration art has the power to change your mind."

The book The Reception of Performance Art. Marina Abramović is Present analyzes the reception of performance art in the field of culture and art, addressing the theory of the communicative act. It traces the main principles and historiography of classic performance, talks about the figure of the performance artist, explains the difference between performance art and actionism, and describes how a random visit to an exhibition can change a person’s life.


The faster performance art transforms, the more difficult it is to maintain its authenticity. Still, the basis of the genre remains unchanged: classical performance art always speaks of a human being. It's always about "double anthropocentrism."

In conversation with Irena Orlov

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