Hoping it would catapult me back into making art after a dry spell, in 2015 I participated in The 100 Day Project, where people choose something they will do or make each day for 100 days, and also document it and post it to social media each day. The project started on April 6th, 2015 and ran until July 14th, 2015. I painted faces from Marina Abramovic's performance at MoMA The Artist is Present from 2010, using photographs Marco Anelli took of each of the participants in his book Portraits in the Presence of Marina Abramovic.
The Artist is Present saw Abramovic sit in a chair six days a week for three months, with people lining up for hours for the chance to sit across from her and look into her eyes. The instructions for participants on a plaque in the second floor atrium at MoMA read “Sit silently with the artist for a duration of your choosing”. Some sat for minutes; some for hours.
Louis van den Hengel, who witnessed Abramovic's entire three month-long performance The Artist is Present and who is writing a book on her, had this to say: "I ended up sitting with Marina for a duration of about three hours; the exchange we had was profoundly moving, unsettling, and remarkably detailed. I am always a bit amused when people ask me if I ever "met" Marina Abramovic in person, even when they know that I have looked into her eyes for hours -- an intimate experience which I have never shared with anyone else, not even my own partner. And Abramovic is a master when it comes to working with the energies of her audience. The dialogue that I had with her sitting in silence on that chair by far exceeded in information any written or spoken conversation that I had with her since. It has given me an embodied understanding of Abramovic's work that forms the foundation of everything I have written about it."
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