Abramović's Naked Doorway To Exhibit At London’s Royal Academy Of Arts
Marina Abramović’s art piece where visitors squeeze past a nude duo is called ‘Imponderabilia’ and will be recreated at the Royal Academy of Arts in 2020
Picture this: you live in a share house and you’ve just risen to get ready for work. You head into the hallway and as you enter so does your housemate from the other end. He is only wearing a towel; this is good news; the bathroom is free. You go to squeeze past each other, no problem, this is a regular occurrence in a busy household. However, this time something goes wrong. This time as you turn and face each other to do the side shuffle your housemate's towel slips from his stupidly feeble grip. You are now staring into the eyes of a naked acquaintance. It’s horrible, it's awkward, it's painful…it’s art?
In what could be the strangest job ever, the Royal Academy of Arts is calling on men and women to stand naked in a narrow doorway facing each other while art enthusiasts squeeze through the uncomfortably small space between them.
How would you handle this art piece? Would you face the naked man or the naked woman? Will you breathe in and try to make yourself as small as possible? Would you say ‘eff-it’ and just barge through? Or would you avoid the walkway all together and find another way through...there's got to be a window you can shimmy open somewhere.
Artist Marina Abramović first performed the piece with her then partner in Bologna in 1977.
The RA (Royal Academy of Arts) show’s curator Andrea Tarsia stated, “When it was first performed some people just stood back … they couldn’t quite handle it and weren’t entirely sure of what they were seeing.” The performance was so confronting it actually resulted in the police being called.
Some went through. Some fairly charged through. A few went through a number of times, actually
According to The Guardian, Tarsia said the work was a simple gesture which “proposed a confrontation with nakedness, with gender, with sexuality, with desire”.
Imponderabilia, will be one of several pieces recreated for a retrospective of Abramović’s work to take place across the RA’s galleries in 2020.
Abramović herself will oversee workshops at which young “performers” will be selected, I guess based on some type of audition…whatever happens, you’re sure to be less nervous at the next interview you do fully clothed.
So, if you're looking for a job and you’re feeling bold, send through your CV and pack your suitcase...you won’t need much.