Fotograf Magazine

Pavlína Morganová’s interview with Marina Abramović

Pragu – New York, 19. 09. 2008  

Conceptual Art including Performance Art is based on communication of pure energy. Performing for more then 3 decades and maintaining such a high level of this energy is striking. Where do you get your energy? 

I’ve also thought about that myself a few times because even friends around me were always complaining that I have too much energy. I‘ll tell you a little story… I went to see the birthplace of my father in Montenegro. It’s a very little village and I’d never been there before. I went there and the village was just one house that was ok, but all the rest was just ruins, I asked an old shepherd where the Abramović house where my father was born was and the house he showed me was ruined and from the middle of the house out of the pure rock there was growing this very big and beautiful oak tree. I went there and sat under that oak and thought that it’s incredible how this oak tree can grow from where there is no earth, just rocks. My father and mother were both partisans in the Tito army and also national heroes. So somehow I am a child of two heroes. We were brought up listening to legends. My whole childhood was about idea that you have to sacrifice everything for the idea or the cause; that you have to go until the end: my father and my mother went to war with the same attitude against the Germans in the partisan times and they really believed in their cause and their function in life in the same way that I believe in my work. This energy comes out of selfdiscipline and a kind of willpower. I know that if I have an idea that takes 5 or 10 years to happen, no matter how much time or sacrifice it takes, I will go and do it without at all considering if my body is in pain or if I am sick and have a fever…I’ve never in my entire life cancelled a performance…ever. 

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