“We were together. I forget the rest.”
Do you know of the artist Marina Abramovich? I had heard of her many times over the years, but I confess that I didn’t hold the most gracious view of performance art, and mentally rolled my eyes whenever I heard her name. Well, thank goodness I can still admit when I’m so caught up in my own prejudices that I almost miss something beautiful. Had I come across this clip on my own, I probably would have skipped over it and clicked on over to a J.Crew sale, or some such. But my dear friend Genevieve posted this on my Facebook page, and when Gen says, “I thought this was beautiful and emotional and that you would like it as well.”, I mute the television and give it my full attention.
Marina Abramovich and Ulay started an intense love story in the 70s, performing art out of the van they lived in. When they felt the relationship had run its course, they decided to walk the Great Wall of China, each from one end, meeting for one last big hug in the middle and never seeing each other again.
At her 2010 MoMa retrospective Marina performed ‘The Artist Is Present’ as part of the show, where she shared a minute of silence with each stranger who sat in front of her. Ulay arrived without her knowing and this is what happened.
Did this give you chills? Did you tear up along with them? I did. It pushes to the front of your mind so many questions, at the forefront being: When you love someone, what exactly IS it that you love?
Thank you, Gen.