Marina Abramovic

We meet the bold Serbian artist for an interview and covershoot in advance of Frieze Art Fair 2010

© Scott Chasserot

For her first significant London show in decades, Abramovic is presenting her most punishing early video works – the bloody and dangerous ‘Rhythm’ series of 1973-74 – as well as those she enacted with her partner of nearly 15 years, Frank Uwe Laysiepen (or Ulay, as he became known), alongside her recent solo works in which she more often defies time, rather than death. She seems even more unbreakable in person, her energy belying her 64 years.

Just before we travelled to Madrid for our interview and performance shoot, a curator from New York warned me that Abramovic often breaks the ice by telling dirty jokes. However, this very surreal day, which ends with us taking in an impromptu bullfight, actually begins with a harrowing story about vermin…

Interview: Ossian Ward

See Marina's London shows

  • Frieze Art Fair 2010

    Critics' choice Until Sun Oct 17, Regent's Park

    Marina will be showing at stand B7 at the Fair.

  • Marina Abramovic

    FreeCritics' choiceLast chance Until Sat Nov 13, Lisson Gallery

    Major showing of work by the influential and confrontational artist, whose performances challenge her own body's physical and psychologic...