Visitors to the Royal Academy of Arts in London are expected to squeeze between two nude models to view a highly anticipated exhibit dedicated to the career of artist Marina Abramović. The work is pictured being performed by Rowena Gander and Kieram Corrin Mitchell. Photo courtesy of Royal Academy of Arts, London/David Parry
Sept. 21 (UPI) -- Visitors to the Royal Academy of Arts in London are expected to squeeze between two nude models to view a highly anticipated exhibit dedicated to the career of artist Marina Abramović.
Abramović, 76, has had a successful five-decade career as a conceptual and performance artist and has taught at some of the world's leading art schools including the Académie des Beaux-Arts in Paris and the Berlin University of the Arts. In 2007, she founded her own institute to support performance art.
"An art world icon and a performance art pioneer -- Marina Abramović has captivated audiences by pushing the limits of her body and mind, for the past 50 years," the Royal Academy said in a statement.
"Marina Abramović Hon RA has earned worldwide acclaim as a performance artist. She has consistently tested the limits of her own physical and mental endurance in her work, subjecting herself to exhaustion, pain and even the possibility of death."
The retrospective of her work, which includes some new interpretations of her historic performances, opens Saturday and runs through Jan. 1 at the Royal Academy.
Some of her historical works in the exhibit are shown through archival footage or photo documentation while others, like Imponderabilia, are recreated or reimagined.
The work Imponderabilia was first performed by the Serbian artist in 1977 during her long relationship with the late German artist Ulay.
The performance features a nude man and a nude woman stoically standing in the frame of a doorway with just inches between them, forcing patrons to squeeze between their bodies.
Two models will faithfully recreate the one-hour performance between four to six times each day of the exhibit, according to the Royal Academy. It is one of several live performances in the exhibit and guests who do not wish to use the naked doorway can enter through an alternative entrance.
Those performing Imponderabilia and other works were cast and trained by the Marina Abramović Institute, according to the Royal Academy.
"Live performance art can be both startling and intimate. For Abramović it also has the power to be transformative," the Royal Academy said in its statement.
"Experience this yourself through performances of Imponderabilia, Nude with Skeleton, Luminosity and The House with the Ocean View."