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“I had to do it for my art.”
That’s how Marina Abramović’s attacker justified smashing a self-made portrait of the famed performance artist over her head. Reportedly a 51-year-old Czech artist living in Florence, the Italian city’s mayor, Dario Nardella, tweeted that Abramović’s assailant was “not new to this type of gesture.” Authorities have not yet named the man in question.
The incident occurred in the courtyard of the Palazzo Strozzi, where the artist was signing books in promotion for her retrospective exhibition, The Cleaner, at the Florentine gallery.
The gallery’s director Arturo Galansino posted on Instagram that Abramović was unharmed by the assault, posting a selfie with the artist. “We’re fine! Everything is fine!” read the photo’s caption. “Marina Abramović is fine and has not suffered any physical damage. After checking with the police, she left Palazzo Strozzi with serenity. Immediately after the incident, she wanted to meet the aggressor for a direct confrontation on the reasons for this action.”
Speaking with the local edition of the Italian newspaper, La Repubblica, Abramović said that she initially thought the man was approaching her with the painting as a present. That was before his expression suddenly changed, and he became very violent. Abramović recalls that she was suddenly trapped inside the portrait’s frame while guards apprehended her assailant and she was whisked away from the scene by the Palazzo’s director.
“Why this hatred against me?” Abramović asked. “What’s the reason? Why this violence? I had not done anything. I had never met him before. He said: ‘I had to do it for my art.’ This was his answer.”
The performance artist also made a distinction between her work and her attacker’s actions. “Violence against others doesn’t make art. I was also a young artist who was not famous, but I have never hurt anyone. In my work I stage different situations and put my life at risk. But this is my decision and I set the conditions.”
Italy has not exactly been kind to Abramović over the last couple months. In August, a promotional poster the artist designed for the Barcolana sailing regatta in the Gulf of Trieste caused controversy. It’s migrant crisis-related refrain, “We’re all in the same boat,” angered the rightwing mayor of Trieste, Paolo Polidori, who compared the poster to Mao Zedong’s Communist political propaganda.
“Black infants in America are now more than twice as likely to die as white infants—11.3 per 1,000 black babies, compared with 4.9 per 1,000 white babies, according to the most recent government data—a racial disparity that is actually wider than in 1850, 15 years before the end of slavery, when most black women were…
he ownership of images has a long and nuanced legal history, which has evolved dramatically in recent years as cultural standards and photographic technologies have rapidly advanced
The show, which honors the 50th anniversary of an exhibition history once ignored, continues a series of projects documenting Wilmington’s contemporary art scene.
Renty and his daughter Delia. Renty was an enslaved African, kidnapped from the Congo, sold and forced into slave labor on the South Carolina plantation of B.F. Taylor
What is the relation between possessing a person, possessing their image, and dispossessing their progeny
As a scholar of African American history and photography whose work has focused on the status of violent images in museums and archives, I fully support the validity of Ms. Tamara Lanier’s claim and the amicus brief.
Two K-12 art teachers will each receive a $1,000 cash gift and an additional $500 to put toward classroom art supplies. Nominations are due October 31.
The daguerreotypes of Renty Taylor, Delia, Drana, Alfred, Jack, George Fassena, and Jem remained in an unused storage cabinet until 1975, when it was discovered by an employee of the Peabody Museum.
I am writing in support of the amicus curiae brief submitted by Professor Ariella Aïsha Azoulay of Brown University for the full restitution of the daguerreotypes of Renty Taylor and his daughter Delia, currently held by Harvard University, to their familial descendant, Tamara Lanier.
We cannot be indifferent to the long-lasting effects of photography. The photographs at the center of Lanier v. Harvard are relentless in making Renty and Delia Taylor work and perform as slaves. The pain inflicted on them has not ceased. Photography has the capacity to propagate harm, and we have the moral obligation to interrupt…