The Artist Is Absent Honors Performance Art Pioneer as MoMA Show Closes
Curated by Daniel Lang/Levitsky, Ariel Speedwagon Quito Ziegler
May 29th, 2010 – 10:00 am to 1:00 am
25CPW Gallery – 25 Central Park West, Manhattan
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On the occasion of the closing weekend of Marina Abramović’s retrospective The Artist is Present, a group of NYC artists and performers will present reperformances of some of Abramović’s best-known works at 25CPW gallery under the title The Artist is Absent.
The show, curated by Ariel Speedwagon, Daniel Lang/Levitsky Quito Ziegler, will give New Yorkers the opportunity to experience works by Abramović and Abramović/Ulay in a context closer to their original presentation.
The works included will center on the physically and emotionally intense performance pieces through which Abramović has been most influential, including “Imponderabilia,” “Freeing the Voice,” and “Rhythm 0.” The group of performers draws heavily from the queer, transgender and BDSM/leather/kink communities, whose connections to Abramović’s work are frequently alluded to but rarely made explicit.
The Artist is Absent presents an alternative approach to reperformance than the one displayed at the MoMA, performing her works sequentially rather than in crowded galleries; by performers with a more varied and contrasting group of bodies; placing the exchange between audience and performer at the heart of the work. The curators’ challenge to the MoMA’s retrospective aims to preseve the vitality and energy of Abramovic’s work and honor her achievements as a pioneer both of performance art and of re-performance.