No one knew to what baseness people who have been given absolute power over another person are capable of reaching. The Yugoslav artist Marina Abramovich had no idea about this either, starting in 1974 one of her most famous projects "Rhythm 0".
The idea of the experiment was simple and elegant: within six hours, allow people to gain complete control over the body of another person. The performance took place at the exhibition center in Naples.
Marina Abramovich stood in front of a long table on which 72 different objects were stacked. Some could please, others hurt and even kill. In front of the artist lay feathers, matches, knife, nails, chains, spoon, wine, honey, sugar, soap, a piece of cake, salt, a box of blades, a metal pipe, a scalpel, alcohol and much more.
Marina Abramovich placed a sign in front of her with instructions:
At first, the audience was neat and gentle: they kissed her, gave flowers, but, without receiving repulse and objections, they gradually went further and further. Art critic Thomas McEvily, who was present at the performance, wrote: “It all started innocently. Someone turned her, another pulled her hand, someone touched it more intimately. The passions of the Neapolitan night began to heat up. By the third hour, all of her clothes were cut with blades, and by the fourth the blades reached her skin. Someone cut her throat and drank the blood. Other sexual things were done to her. She was so involved in the process that she would not mind if the audience wanted to rape or kill her. Faced with her lack of will, there were people who stood up for her. When one of the men put a loaded pistol to Marina's temple, putting her own finger on the trigger, a fight broke out between the spectators."
“At first, the audience really wanted to play with me,” recalls Abramovich. - Then they became more and more aggressive, it was six hours of real horror. They cut off my hair, stuck thorns of roses into my body, cut the skin on my neck, and then pasted a plaster on the wound. After six hours of the performance, with tears in my eyes, I walked naked towards the audience, which is why they literally ran out of the room, as they realized that I "came to life" - I stopped being their toy and began to control my body. I remember that when I came to the hotel that evening and looked at myself in the mirror, I found a lock of gray hair."
“I wanted to show one thing: it’s amazing how quickly a person can return to a wild cave state, if he is allowed to. The experience I have gained suggests that if you leave the decision with the public, you can be killed,”says the artist.
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