She is traveling by ship from New York to London, says Marina Abramović. This has nothing to do with flight shame. Shame isn’t exactly something one associates with Marina Abramović, the artist who once allowed her audience to do whatever they wanted with her. Abramović is currently not allowed to fly. A knee operation in the spring was followed by an embolism. “I almost died. It was very dangerous,” she tells Stern in an interview.

She takes her cell phone in her hand, types, swipes, “here”: She shows a photo of several blood clots, strung together like in a horror chamber pearl necklace. “They got that out of my lungs.” When Abramović talks about her near death, it also feels like a performance.

Marina Abramović became famous with her ruthless actions. Singer Lady Gaga promoted Abramović’s institute – naked. Abramović inspired rapper Jay-Z to create the video clip “Picasso Baby”. Artists and professors emphasize what she has done for performance art: developed it further, made it known. Abramović has a perfect publicity and marketing system.

Access to all STERN PLUS content and articles from the print magazine


Already registered?