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Marina Abramovic: The Artist is Present (15)

Marina Abramovic: The Artist is Present (15)

Documentary, Biography, History

A documentary that follows the Serbian performance artist as she prepares for a retrospective of her work at The Museum of Modern Art in New York.

More information on this production is available at

The critical consensus

While some of Abramovic’s work might sound a bit hard-going, the context provided by Akers’ film makes it surprisingly accessible, while the real stars turn out to be the audience, whose natural, unguarded reactions to Abramovic give this film a transcendent, luminous and ultimately life-affirming quality.

****(*)Eddie Harrison, The List, 14/06/2012

If you’re sceptical about performance art, this might just change your mind.

****(*)Simon Kinnear, Total Film, 29/06/2012

A little pretentious maybe, but then you've got to wonder at a woman who could sit motionless in a wooden chair, eight hours a day for three months.

****(*)Damon Wise, Empire Online, 02/07/2012

Besides being a fascinating portrait of a life and a half well lived, it's an illuminating look at the plainly lucrative business of modern art.

****(*)Alison Rowat, The Herald, 05/07/2012

Marina Abramović emerges from this arresting documentary as the Maria Callas of performance art.

****(*)Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian, 05/07/20123

Surprisingly effective documentary: smoothly structured and entertaining.

****(*)Davina Quinlivan, Little White Lies, 05/07/2012

Interspersed with this are clips of her performances from the 1970s and 1980s, which may prompt at least two questions in the non-aficianado : 1) Is this pretentious? 2) Is it actually art? They are somewhat more difficult to answer, considering the likeable and down-to-earth nature of the woman herself.

**(*)(*)(*)Anthony Quinn, The Independent, 06/07/2012

The power of art, artist and filmmaking reaches a critical mass at just the right moment and then it’s over, leaving you surprisingly shaken. The artist is present. It’s recommended you check her out.

*****Sophie Monks Kaufman, Eye for Film, 07/06/2012

An exhilarating, elegantly executed film that holds a mirror up to the art world, its protagonists and its devotees, forcing us to question the whole circus.

Jason Solomons, The Observer, 08/07/2012

Whether you know of her or not, like her or not, understand her or not, you will get something out of this 100 minute film; you will know her. And for someone whose medium is live performance, this makes this film an incredible feat.

****(*)Andrew Latimer, TVBomb, 16/07/2012

Features about Marina Abramovic: The Artist is Present (15)

Profile: Matthew Akers on Marina Abramovic: The Artists is Present

Eddie Harrison, The List, 20/06/2012

Where and when?

Edinburgh Filmhouse, Edinburgh from Friday July 6, 2012, until Thursday July 19, 2012. More info:

Dundee Contemporary Arts, Dundee from Friday July 6, 2012, until Thursday July 12, 2012. More info:

Glasgow Film Theatre, Glasgow from Tuesday August 7, 2012, until Wednesday August 8, 2012. More info:

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