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Marina Abramović – WePresent Series (2021)
Portrait of Marina Abramovic (2019), film still from Body of Truth© Indi Film

Marina Abramović is spotlighting the next generation of artists

In a new, year-long collaboration with WeTransfer, the legendary artist handpicks five artists breaking new ground in performance art, from Berlin to Guatemala

As part of WeTransfer’s WePresent series, Marina Abramović has shone a light on a selection of performance artists she feels are evolving the art form. As the project’s inaugural guest curator, Abramović has chosen five innovative artists from around the world who are breaking new ground and could potentially continue the legacy of her work:

Berlin-based conceptual artist, Ana Prvački works with sculpture, performance, and watercolour paint to draw the audience’s attention to various issues including the plight of bees and conservationism. “Ana Prvački’s medium is performance,” says Abramović. “Her tools are her wit and humour, through which she delivers a clear message straight to the public.”

Maurício Ianês, whose work Abramović has described as “risky and unpredictable”, was a painter until his tutor introduced him to the work of groundbreaking performance artists including Abramović. The Brazillian artist recalled, “From that moment on I only wanted to perform.”

Guatemalan artist Regina José Galindo creates empathy for social injustice, violence, and oppression by placing her own body in vulnerable positions. Her work draws attention to the painful fragility of our physical selves. “Galindo uses the limits of our body to confront social issues and inequality,” says Abramović. “Her works are heavy and emotionally charged, leaving us to question our bodies’ value in society.”

“Terence Koh never ceases to surprise,” says Abramović. Koh’s controversial artworks have drawn attention in the past for using semen, and for adding erections to religious iconography. But the Chinese artist’s latest work heralds a move toward focusing on nature and the human now. 

Abramović’s fifth and final nominated artist is performance and visual artist Yiannis Pappas, whose work is inspired by ritual, beauty and discipline. “Pappas has an anthropological and phenomenological approach to his work, using a vast range of mediums — photography, language, video, and performance,” Abramović explains. “Most of the time, his own body is the centre of the work.

This is only the first part of the legendary performance artist’s collaboration with WePresent. In May, WeTransfer will premiere what they describe as a “digital manifestation” of The Abramović Method – the school of performance art designed to help artists become more in touch with the here and now. Following that, A Time Capsule in September will allow viewers a glimpse into Abramovic's artistic method, as she curates “an everlasting body of references, ideas and objects to inspire all that will succeed her.”

Visit the gallery above for a look through the work of the five artists highlighted by Marina Abramović.

WeTransfer’s WePresent, curated by Marina Abramović, is available here