Performance artist Marina Abramovic has lashed out at Jay Z in an interview with Spike. She claims that the rapper "totally used" her when he shot a video for "Picasso Baby" in 2013, for which he adapted her piece The Artist Is Present.
Abramovic says that she'd agreed to appear in the video and let him adapt the work on the condition that he donated to the Marina Abramovic Institute – something that he hasn't done.
The artist outlined the deal they had in place: "The day before, he came to my office and I gave him an entire power point presentation and said 'Okay, you can help me, because I really need help to build this thing'. Then he just completely used me. And that wasn’t fair. This is very different from Lady Gaga, for example, who has done great work for me. Just by having 45 million followers, she brought all these young kids into my public."
Jay Z's video takes the art gallery location and concept of The Artist Is Present, except there's perhaps more dancing and rapping than usual. Abramovic described the collaboration as "a one way transaction" and declared that she won't make the same mistake twice.
"I will never do it again," she said. "Never. I was really naive in this kind of world. It was really new to me, and I had no idea that this would happen. It’s so cruel, it’s incredible. I will stay away from it for sure."