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Rhythm 0

Marina Abramovich • Theater design, 1974
About the artwork
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Art form: Theater design
Technique: Performance
Date of creation: 1974
Artwork in selections: 2 selections

Description of the artwork «Rhythm 0»

"Rhythm 0" 1974 is one of the most famous and emotionally complex performances by Marina Abramovich. If in early projects the author endangered her physical health, then this time the girl's life was at stake.

In one of the halls of the Morra Gallery in Naples, the artist laid out 72 objects on the table, some of which were deadly: a rose, grapes, a knife, a whip and even a loaded pistol. Marina signed a paper that she assigns herself a "passive" role in the action, assigns all responsibility for her body and its condition exclusively to herself, and for six hours she gave herself into the hands of the audience.

The first actions of those around them were very careful and delicate. After a couple of hours, the crowd "grew bolder", and then, feeling their impunity, and completely - brutalized. Curiosity was replaced by aggression. They cut off Abramovich's clothes, scratched with thorns and stabbed the naked body with a knife, one of the visitors inserted a loaded pistol into the girl's hand and pointed it at her neck.

The action demonstrated the true nature of people who are capable of forgetting about morality, humanity and civilization in a matter of minutes.

“I wanted to show one thing: it's just amazing how quickly a person can return to a wild cave state, if he is allowed to,” explained Marina.