Artist Stood Still For 6 Hours to Let People Do What They Wanted to Her Body, The Results Are Heartbreaking

Many of us know Yugoslavian performance artist Marina Abramovic through the video of her painfully silent reunion with her former lover Frank Uwe “Ulay” Laysiepen.

Many people have hailed Abramovic as the “grandmother of performance art.” After all, she has been staging thought-provoking interactive installations for more than 40 years.

Indeed, it can’t be denied that her performances have a lasting impact. In fact, one of her earliest performances is still being talked about today. Abramovic staged a performance piece called “Rhythm 0” at Studio Morra in Naples, Italy.

At first, only photographers were going near her. 


The premise of “Rhythm 0” was deceptively simple: Abramovic would stand still for six hours straight while the people who came to see her were urged to do whatever they wanted to her using one of 72 objects that she had placed on a table.

After a while, people began picking stuff from the table. 

Abramovic stood in the middle of the room with a notice board containing these words:

There are 72 objects on the table that one can use on me as desired.
I am the object.
During this period I take full responsibility.
Duration: 6 hours (8 pm – 2 am)

Some people made her sit down so they could humiliate her. 

Among the things on the table were “objects of pleasure” and “objects of destruction.” Among the harmless objects were feathers and flowers. The dangerous stuff included a knife, razor blades, and a loaded gun.

There were those who changed her position.


What happened in the next six hours was horrifying, to say the least.

There were people who liked to attach things to her.


Art critic Thomas McEvilley who observed the performance related:

“It began tamely. Someone turned her around. Someone thrust her arms into the air. Someone touched her somewhat intimately.”

One man used a razor to make a cut on her neck.

Then, as McEvilley went on to disclose,

“In the third hour, all her clothes were cut from her with razor blades. In the fourth hour, the same blades began to explore her skin. Various minor sexual assaults were carried out on her body. She was so committed to the piece that she would not have resisted rape or murder.”

It just got worse in the last two hours.

Someone made her point a gun at herself. 


Abramovic’s own account of what the people did to her was even more heartbreaking.

She recalled,

“I felt raped, they cut off the clothes, they stuck me with thorns of rose in the stomach, aimed the gun at my head, another came apart.”

Some men undressed her and groped her.

When the six hours were over, Abramovic started to walk among the people. They couldn’t look her in the face.

The violence and sexual harassment escalated.

Abramovic observed that people didn’t want any sort of confrontation with her. They didn’t want to be held accountable or judged for what they did. It seemed as if they wanted to forget how they relished hurting her.

Listen to Marina Abramovic talk about her frightening experience. 

Abramovic noted:

“This work reveals something terrible about humanity. It shows how fast a person can hurt you under favorable circumstances. It shows how easy it is to dehumanize a person who does not fight, who does not defend himself. It shows that if he provides the stage, the majority of ‘normal’ people, apparently can become truly violent.”


237 Comments on “Artist Stood Still For 6 Hours to Let People Do What They Wanted to Her Body, The Results Are Heartbreaking”

  1. I don’t think she needed to stand still for six hours to experience the worst humanity can dish out ! ?
    Why would you allow any person to degrade you by cutting or allowing others to sexually debase all human emotions in 6 hours. I noticed many where men ! It’s a sad state of affairs when humans react with such fists in for another human being.

    1. but she knows if she left.. we would not be reading about this. She wanted to see how low humans would go and the accommodated her. THEY LIKED IT.

      1. that is so true. it would have been forgotten. She demonstrated strength and dignity, which is something no one else in the room could ever match.

        1. Strength and dignity?
          She didn’t want to get a real job.
          Today? She holds “spirit cooking” sessions, engages in rituals, cannibalism, Satan worshiping among the elite.
          Find out who this bitch is, and you will know why she deserved it.
          I’m guessing back then, she was psychologically figuring out what she can do, what people would do, how to go about it legally

          1. Maybe if one person showed her compassion and love back then, her path in life might have been different. Everyone there found reasons to hate her instead of treating her like a human being deserving of respect. They became animals, assuming she wanted and deserved to be treated like dirt. We always have to make some other person less than ourselves to give ourselves a temporary boost. It is Auschwitz, Africa, the South, and the womb over and over again. We never learn.

          2. the people with angry replies like this, it’s because the story struck a chord with them and they know they are among the ones who would have hurt her.

      2. how is this low? they arent rapists, she let them do it, she encouraged it, we are human males, we like kinky stuff…if a woman asks us to do it, we oblige…not a big deal man

        1. Um, she didn’t ask anything in particular. This was a social experiment that showed a very morbid side of man kind. I bet she had hoped of different outcomes. Even the less extreme groppers bring to me images of sexual depravity. This goes beyond kinky to a place of dark fantasy. I’m sure she would have preferred to see humans behaving in a more positive and humane manner, though I expect she knew what would come of this. The shame isn’t just my opinion, it’s evident in the monsters avoidance of her eyes. They could not bare to look her in the soul and face their wicked selves. This was not a consensual sex act, it was a morbidly artistic demonstration of the evil inner desires of mankind.

          1. Go look at porn.
            Happens all the time.
            She wasn’t hurt, she’s an exhibitionist.
            She knew what would happen.
            Research who she is.
            Spirit cooking, cannibalism, Satan worshiping ritualistic practices with John Podesta and others —like Miley Cyrus, Lady Gaga, etc
            Google it. There are pictures

          2. Abramovic may have not ‘asked’ for it, but she didn’t object either. You’re missing something basic here, and it’s that most people at some level want to do things to others that the receiving party may not enjoy, and it’s up to the individual to protect themselves. This is why we have government to enforce laws. This is why we have the word ‘no’.

          3. I could not have said it better thank you. Had I been there I probably would have run home and gotten my bathrobe for her. that is the kind of human my parents raised.

        2. Misogynistic BS. You should be ashamed to call yourself human, never mind male. Don’t ever appoint yourself as a spokesman for either humans, or males, as you speak for neither. You have a right to your opinion, but it is yours, and yours alone. Say your piece and then crawl back under the rock that you came from.

        3. No she did nothing but allow whatever the thoughts/minds of the people conjured up. She held a mirror to them so it those who commit gross acts to look to themselves and they are totally responsible for what happened.

          1. yeah because noone here has sex. sex is gross.. YOU FUCKING HYPOCRITS. PLEASE STICK TO YOUR CLAIMS AND NEVER HAVE CHILDREN. TY

        4. Your one of those lowlifes that make this world so discussing.Just because someone asks for it doesn’t mean you have to ablidge.You’re just a sick human being.

          1. Society has downgraded sex to the lowest and basest actions. It is supposed to be the act of two people who show the utmost love, respect and gentle affection for one another. We have gotten so far away from true love and beauty in our rush for immediate gratification. In the end, if we continue this path, we are neither loved nor satisfied.

        5. Their actions fell within the scope of the exhibit/performance so, I’m not sure what one could conclude solely from the actions themselves. Maybe they were just as into the art as Marina was. But, I think we can judge and form conclusions from how those people acted AFTER the performance. The fact that they couldn’t look her in the eyes or interact with her suggests discomfort. Would you be uncomfortable if you were merely obliging a woman who asked you for some kinky stuff? I wouldn’t be. Seems to me that these men were uncomfortable because they were doing more than just engaging with the art. Seems they knew they had done something wrong. And that’s what we can judge. That they knew they were doing something wrong and they did it anyway. Because they were empowered by, as written above, “favorable circumstance.”

        6. The males choice to do the kinky stuff she never specify what to do to her but thats where these men went with it. That shows the mind of men. Sexual and im sure it would have went to rape of it werent so public.

        7. It is a big deal man!! She did not encourage to be raped or assaulted. She simply placed objects on the table and was fully clothed. This is beyond kinky, this is masochistic behavior that is not normal. Which tells me you are not normal. I am sick of hearing you male are humans who think like this. You are not human, not even animals, more like jack asses. God this reply makes me so sick.

        8. Yeah, “It’s natural” and you’re a waste of human flesh with a special place in hell if you honestly believe that crap

      3. Exactly I completely agree with you. But can we talk about how most of the people were men? Not being sexist but for real, most of the pictures depict males doing the bad things, such as the one holding the razor to her throat, or the three infront of her while she is in a state of undress. It’s not what is wrong with humanity, it is what is wrong with men. A woman would never have degraded another like that.

        1. Unfortunately, women can be extraordinarily cruel, as well. I am not certain if they mentioned the gender of the one who made her point the gun at herself, or of some people who cut her. I have experienced first hand how cruel women and men can be. Evil knows no color, gender, or nationality. Gratefully, neither does Love.

    2. This performance took place in 1974, 43 years ago. This was a different era. Not to say that people today wouldn’t do the same things to her, but back then, in the free-wheeling 60s and 70s, anything went in terms of art. But it was also the time of ‘love’ and I imagine she might have expected that there would be more rose petals than thorns. I wonder if anyone tried to stop the people cutting her with the razor blades.

        1. Shia lebouf (sp?) Did a similar “performance” just a few years ago.. It was worse. He’s a man & all, but still he was raped while doing this & spat on, it was just as bad now, and society now is much more aware than in 1974.
          Unfortunately people won’t ever change. When someone is an easy target others take full advantage.

          1. So what’s the point in doing it? Repeat stupidity? Who wouldn’t know such things might happen. And I know people who are artists that surreptitiously (without anyone else behind the scenes knowing any further details) that often it’s not all pure improvisational or raw situational, but some things pre-planned for shock value. Abramovic is known for SHOCK value. If she had any less shocking outcome she may have been disappointed in the entire thing. She loves to reveal the evil of humanity, as it’s an excuse to do debaucherous things as well, and the more SHOCK value, the more famous. The famous and better the show, the more books she sells and tickets for other insane performances.

      1. Regardless of the era, my thoughts go to what was lacking in this experiment. Not one person among the group had any sense of maternity or human decency? No one covered her body or offered kindness? I don’t care what objects are on a table, character is defined by acts of selflessness.

        1. It’s an appalling construct of our natural disgusting behaviour.
          Given many experiments befor this ‘art project’ and years before Shia lebouf did it we had the Stanford experiment. Human ‘mans’ behaviour was documented. We have not changed , we will not change. A baby kangaroo knows to crawl from the vagina into the pouch. It’s genetics. Humans have the most appalling genetics. I’d like to think women would behave differently given the same environment. But I know, not all women are the compassionate beings we hope they were.
          Had Marina been ignored she would’ve been annoyed, we would not be talking about her 40 years later. She knew the outcome before she started as the Stanford experiment was performed 3 years before her art project.
          It’s the items she decided to put on the table it’s the way they were used . The entire thing is disturbing.
          But I know we haven’t changed. The trolls on the internet confirm this every day. Without consequence humans will say and do the most appalling things.
          Maybe w this in mind, let’s be better than these experiments say we are.
          Let’s really be human.

        2. I agree. I also wondered if anyone had tried to cover her or protect her. It is really sad that our society allows these indignations!

        3. I agree. They assumed she was an object, too, and that is unacceptable, even if it is wrapped up neatly as a “performance piece”. There is not a single place on earth that compassion should not be welcome.

      2. Thats the bigger loss. No one was brave enough to stop the ones damaging her. The fear of confrontation or taking the lead in something is stronger than the act to degrade. That is a painful lesson for humanity to learn. We are more afraid of defending someone than of hurting them.

        1. I have to agree with you. But don’t be fooled. She has always invited controversy and is plenty debasing and debaucherous in her art pieces and performance art installments, at least according to the world at large based on Christian morality spectrum, which she does not share.

          1. The Christian morality spectrum has nothing to do with morality. While Christians would like to spread this fallacy (that only Christians are Moral and without God we are all debauched sinners) it isn’t true. Second, this woman does not HAVE to share your Christian Morality Spectrum. She does what artists are Supposed to Do–Make us Think about our world. I know Thinking goes against the Christian Morality Spectrum, but some of us prefer to Think, Reason, Question and Explore without being blindly obedient to an imaginary construct. We prefer to Chose Morality, for the good of Mankind and not because we fear some mythical eternal punishment

    3. Lock their asses up
      This is crazy what is wrong with ppl n yeah I get the point that she made too it’s just sad
      All the people that have done wrong to her should be punished.. experiment or not! It shows how they are and what they could do to another person and it goes to show how messed up ppl really are … How can u trust someone to go back to their lives after doing such mean n hateful things. I wouldn’t trust them to be free. Imagine what these ppl do on their own time …o hell no
      I feel bad for her

    4. Why is it always “humanity”?! Speak for yourself.

      “…far too many sweeping claims about “human nature” are drawn exclusively from samples of Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich, and Democratic… societies.” — Behavioral and Brain Sciences

    5. Art should inspire humanity. Remaining motionless with a loaded gun, razor blades and feathers is not Art! There is no art in giving people permission to abuse another living soul. This is the opposite of art.

      1. There were seventy-two items there. Some could have been poetry books, a hairbrush, moisturizer, or other things designed to build a person up. The fact that people went for the implements of destruction does not mean better options were not available. Even if they weren’t, we have our minds, hearts and hands, which we can use to speak life, hold gently, and empathize with.

    6. I would say that they were males but not that they were of mankind, not men. A man is a male of mankind, Males of humanity are not men, only males of mankind are men. Have a look at their coloration, their build their features. Definitely humanity and not mankind.

    7. I think this is a horrible example of human nature, but i have to wonder: How many people did NOT hurt her or did not participate at all. I think that in some cases, these people were evil at best, but do they represent all of humanity. I love people. I find them for the most part to be kind and generous. I think her experiment brought out the worst in humanity, but where is the best. I think it’s there but we don’t see it because those who chose to do nothing are silent. Unseen. I think this is the case all over the world. I’m a performer too. I sing. People are so good to me that I love singing for them. I sometimes get a nasty comment, but it is rare so I brush it aside.

    8. Well obviously you wouldn’t do it. And it wasn’t for her experience. It was art… in other words it was to show something about humanity that she felt needed to be revealed.

    9. I think the point was – and IS – that given the choice, people WOULD choose to do those things rather than adorn her with the flowers, caress her face with the feathers, or clean her up after someone else had done something to her.
      The fact that no one could look her in the eye underscores that although no one wanted “confrontation” or “to be judged,” they still knew what they did was WRONG.
      She didn’t have to stand still for six hours to experience the worst of humanity. Now that she has, I wonder how it will affect her future work.

    10. She wanted to show everyone how low humans go. It wasn’t about her. It was about making others feel something by what she went through. Showing they aren’t alone when it comes to the bad things people do. Art is about making the viewer feel something. That was the point of all of this. She had already been through hell, this was just allowing others to see how low people could get. Make them feel something. It obviously worked too. If it didn’t, people would not be attacking her on this thread.

    11. People are horrible. That’s why we have laws. That’s why people speak up for and defend themselves. Abramovic essentially waived these protections, bad things happening to her should be no surprise.

        1. No one here is trying to change history…but I agree, it IS a quote. You didn’t use the word, John Lennon did, as did Sojourner Truth.
          …and it IS true.

    1. You are forgetting these are her fellow artist.. she allowed this For what? Warped and they think Americans should give tax dollars to artist like this. I know it was a long time ago.. BUT THEY ARE THE SAME BUT MORE WARPED.

          1. Phil Zimbardo showed in 1971 how the average person is capable of the worst and it was shown at Abu Ghraib showed that the human condition has not changed much in 40 years. The guards at prison camps for Nazi Germany were ‘normal’ people put in abnormal situations. Calling the patrons ‘sick bastards’ negates the whole point. Check out Zimbardo’s TED talk on the nature of evil. Evil is not someone else. Evil is possible in any human. In the wrong situation. I’ve spent my professional life working with psychopathy and evil is not “others” but possible in almost anyone.

        1. The pity of it is that those who will learn the most and the best from this are NOT the people who assaulted her or would think of assaulting her (given similar circumstances).
          Even though they couldn’t look her in the eye when it was over, I’d bet my bottom dollar that they’d do EXACTLY the same thing again, if they were given the same choice to make.

      1. Where in the article did it say these were her fellow artists? It said “anyone who came to see her show” nothing about fellow artists.

      2. It wasn’t just for art. It was out of curiosity and more like a test to see how warped this world really is. It’s disgusting that people actually did that to her, and we would like to think that humanity has gotten better as a whole, but we can never know until someone does something like this again.

      3. Most people don’t want to see the truth of lack of humanity in many people.
        She is not warped. People are.
        Don’t kill the messenger because you can’t take in the message.

    2. I disagree. Mankind is not depraved. These people were as well as those who stood around and did nothing.
      But the instinct of human beings is to help one another, not hurt each other. The immediate response after any natural disaster proves that.

      1. well, you’re both right. Humans are complex. they are very altruistic and kind if they identify WITH someone, but if they separate themselves from a human or group, there is no limit to their depravity. This artist set up the latter situation, and created a situation of separation.. she was the object, they were the mob. This also speaks to mob mentality, where a group of humans will do things none of them would do separately, most likely.

        Humans are depraved. One of the few species that will consume each other as a normal part of everyday existence… this is why we have slavery, sex trafficking, sub-living wages, patriarchy, genocide, etc. capitalism is the ultimate in separation, and gathering great wealth at the expense of anyone and everyone needed for such goals..

      2. Yes, but this wasn’t a natural disaster, or any such large-scale, devastating event.
        It happened to ONE WOMAN, and she gave people a choice.
        They made their choices for the world to see, and their choices reflect the world at large.
        It was a brave move for her to make, because the objects she provided indicate that she knew what the natural tendency would be…and it wasn’t to help or even to be kind.

      1. So, to be “better” is to be inhuman? I hope I misunderstand.

        We expect them to set examples, and we hope those examples are something we can aspire to.
        Too often, they’re not, but that’s the hope.

    3. “Depraved” Mostly from her. It was HER art show piece. she provided all the tools of harm..duh!. hahahaha, are you kidding? She’s got you fooled!

      1. You don’t seem to have read very well. She provided 72 items. Some of which were objects of pleasure, some were objects of destruction. She did not force anyone in attendance to do anything, much less dictate which items to use or how to use them. Taking advantage of an opportunity that presents itself does NOT absolve someone of guilt…it simply makes them opportunistic at best, predatory at worst.

        She simply decided to stand still and accept what was done to her in order to illustrate a point. Saying she is the one who is depraved is like saying a woman deserves to be raped based on what kind of clothes she wears or because she was walking alone in a parking lot to get to her car after work. You missed the point entirely…I suspect because you are one of those people who believes a woman can be raped because she was asking for it.

      2. The “tools of harm” are the only ones mentioned because they were the only ones used.
        She gave them a choice. There were other items on the table, “harmless” objects.
        She is not depraved in the least. It isn’t depraved to allow humanity to depict itself as depraved.
        HUMANITY was the show. SHE was the venue.

  2. She shouldn’t degrade herself to the level of others, any person will come to hurt and rape whatever they can, if they know there is no reaction to their sick doing….humanity is going backward, not forward…..she can show how sick we are without denigration…to herself….

      1. actually he wrote, “any person will come to hurt and rape whatever they can” which shows the depth of ignorance and depravity given this individual. That he believes that every person wants to hurt and rape whatever they can shows the evil and despicable nature of this individual. So this must be a Man full of fear and hate and cowardice. A bully who only wants to hurt others and take whatever he can. So did his Mother beat him, starve him and lock him in a box? Is that all he knows of the world?

        Why not nurture, protect and care for someone? why not feed and care for them? Is this what humankind has become? if so then the insects should take over the world. Even Wasps are more caring and compassionate than humans if that is the truth.

          1. The biblical devil would do something exactly like this in order to twist and tempt whatever humans were especially susceptable to it. I’m no religious person, but the descriptions given of the abrahamic devil would fit this womans behaviour to a tee…… Who is worst here? the depraved individuals that gave into temptation or the person intentionally, willingly and with much forethought, tempting the worst amongst us to do their very worst?

    1. IT WAS US/ WE.. it was HER FELLOW ARTIST.. warped think they are above ordinary people. She is counted in the group because she made herself open to what they did to her.

    2. People had a choice. They did not have to denigrate her. She did not denigrate herself. I agree humanity is going backward. This clearly and horrifically illustrates that sad fact. Art is not always about pretty pictures. Sometimes we need art as a mirror, to reflect upon humanity’s monstrosity.

        1. People can cast blame on each other and never take any of it on their shoulders. Daily, people treat others very similarly, yet refuse to acknowledge it. It may not be to the extent that occurred here, but it does occur. Most are blind to it. It is not survival of the fittest, it is not caring about others to the fullest.

      1. Thanks for saying that. I agree with you. To me, it is shocking that people would take the opportunity to choose to hurt or humiliate her. It would have been just as easy to provide comfort and use the 72 objects for something positive or nurturing. e.g., the glass of water given to her to drink instead of pouring it on her; the razor blade to cut a ribbon of my own clothing and tie it into her hair instead of cutting her clothes off. I wonder if Abramovic suspected that participants would engage in depraved interactions with her, or did she have faith that people would be kind and positive? The fact that they wouldn’t interact with her after the performance was over is indicative of peoples’ shame and attempts to deny their hateful sides. Abramovic was incredibly courageous…risking her well-being and her very life to demonstrate how truly horrible humans can be, and given the choice, how so many choose to hate and hurt rather than be kind and nurturing. I am disgusted by the participants, not by Marina.

      2. Spot on!!! It’s not about her – it was about the audience that took advantage and those that stood by and watched! It happens everyday – with or without camera’s on. It’s not easy to look at the things that humans are capable of – it makes us uncomfortable even from the safety of our computers, from our living rooms. It appears never to be REAL until it happens to those that have never experienced it. As my white-middle-aged-male boss once weighed in and said about police harassment “It’s just never happened to me – so I don’t get it”. You don’t have to experience “it” to get “it”. She was brave to take the risk of exposing herself – literally and emotionally. Wow.

        1. Do you always swallow your own crap whole? This may have been “courageous” but if nothing had happened that was dangerous, it wouldn’t seem all that courageous now would it? It would have been a total flop. Abromavic Loves shock and controversy. She has built her entire career around shocking and controversial performance art to a large degree. It was a long time ago and she was trying to get her foot in the door most likely, which she felt required her to do something that would garner shock and other strong emotions from people around her, observing and she achieved exactly what she wanted. It was really risky, yeah, but those dangerous tools and implements are what she literally brought to the table. Any simpleton would know how this would transpire and that is exactly how it happened and the audience gave her exactly what she was implying they should do.
          Here I am, a rabbit surrounded by strangers some wolves, some sheep maybe even a few other rabbits. Oh my, wonder what might happen. If anything they saw right through her and humiliated her to reveal her own stupidity. She’s lucky some bonkers psychopath or extremely irresponsible person didn’t show up and actually figure out a way to try and make her pull the trigger. Seriously, in all practicality, beyond the bubble of the art world, what would one realistically expect?

      3. I don’t think humanity is going backwards or forwards in terms of potential for evil. Just look at the Roman Games, the Inquisition, punishments for stealing food in the middle ages and so forth. Today there is the added insult of man-made pollution, however.

      4. We’re not going backwards because I’m sure this would have been much worse if it had been done hundreds or thousands of years ago.

    3. no it really TAKES THIS. She could show how sick we are….without hurting herself in the process… but who would she put in her place? An animal? Another person? I wish that they had also used a MALE in this. To see the differences.

      1. Yes, would they do this to a man? A minority? Would they do it if it were one on one? Was group evil at play? People feeling pressured to engage to be part of the group? It was interesting, perverted, enlightening but leaves so many unanswered questions. Overall it’s sad that humans can harm each other for no reason and yet we know criminals do it all the time.

      2. This happens to animals all the time. And then the perpetrators smile and take a selfie. So it is just below the surface. Many people would do this to others, if permission were given, or if it were lawful. And many do it regardless.

    4. If by “any” person, you mean “all,” then no…I don’t agree with that…but I think that argument is part of her point of this whole thing. What kind of person does it take?

      Degradation of all kinds happens every day and goes unnoticed. What does THAT say about humanity? Perhaps it DOES take a display like this to show how “sick we are” and have people take notice.
      That, in itself, is a sad commentary on humanity!

    5. Actually no other way has worked. The point of things like this is to make people feel strong emotions. Just telling people hasn’t worked. Art like this works every time. It even worked on you. You are showing strong emotion towards this exhibit showing her intent worked the way she wanted it to.

  3. Has this woman recovered from this experience? Man’s inhumanity to man is well documented. Nazi Germany proved to what depths of depravity we can sink when there are no repercussions. Our troops at Abu Ghraib shows we as a people are not immune.

    1. No. about ABU Graib. We were not there.. at ABU GRAIB. I will not let anyone disrespect our Troops. Nazi Germany it was their goal to experiment with the people who they thought were less than them. THAT IS NOT HUMANITY. You will have your warped humans who will do stuff like that. But Not all of Humanity. Artist seems to think they are Better than others and showed how warped they are even to a fellow Artist.. She talks about Humanity. I say the Artist were the people with the problems.

      1. You won’t let anyone disrespect your troops but by your thoughts and actions, in-actions, you allow them to degrade others when they have total power over them.

        If you set yourself up as the world police then you must be above reproach in EVERYTHING you do.

        Your troops let EVERYONE down.

      2. Americans are not immune to committing war crimes and other atrocities. It has been well documented. Those American troops who participate in and/or allow these acts to happen disrespect US and all humanity.

      3. You seem to think that these were Only artists.All sorts of people were there.She’s calling them artists because they participated.
        Nothing about this is restricted to Only people who make art.That would be silly.

      4. You are in denial. Your troops are murderers. The US is the biggest warmongering country in the world. Torture at Abu Graib did occur and it is on video. As well as Gitanomo Bay. As well as Vietnam. You are not exempt. This installation was made to see if people have a dark side, and the answer was positve. The participants were people from the street. It was 1974, when people were more gentle and kind than today. Today she would probably be murdered.

      5. Sorry, but the troops disrespected themselves by their own actions. Other troops and veterans were disgusted by their behavior.

  4. People are totaly depraved and sadistiick,this sjovn hao the socalled humans are,but NONE of then wanted to be confronted,COWARDS ALL of them! Shame on you,bastards dong that to a woman,or anybody.

      1. as an artist myself, with children and a husband and such, I take offense. Yes I’ve done performance art… most recently at a cemetery where I covered a grave with yellow ducks. To make a point. So yes we’re weird and such, but…. these were people there to observe… not all were artists. I think we’re ALL depraved. Take any group of middle school girls and put them in this room, and they probably would have killed her. These people KNEW they were being photographed. KNEW. What would happened today with filming?

        1. Exactly…that was part of her point.
          So many comments speak of the instinct to help, but where was it?
          No…it was a sad commentary on humanity in general…willing to hurt, willing to let hurt. Far fewer are those who would have prevented it.

  5. When the sick beings took her clothes off, did anyone put her clothes back on? Did anyone show their disgust towards the bastards who humiliated her?

    The author is telling us about the so-called humans doing their worst. He needs to mention if there were any good people there.

    I personally feel sick that this could happen but probably not surprised but I do refuse to believe nobody confronted the rats who debased her or tried to stop them doing so. Was their a security guard there? It would be good if the author replied,to some of these questions.

    1. It was probably difficult to put them back on since the razor was used to cut them from her.

      It would be interesting to see how many folks tried to stop it, tried to block her from harm, etc. By the amount of harm done to her, I’m afraid it might not have been many people.

  6. I can’t see how there wasn’t one person willing to protect her? To stand there and call people out. Just because you can hurt someone that is what you chose. I would not have allowed anyone to hurt her.

    1. Thank you, you could have protected me while I tried to protect her I am a very altruistic person but you look considerably younger. I have an open mind but the hurting part of this demonstration is unsettling. It reminds me of a traveling show of preserved cadavers in plastic. I think humanity takes a hit. Not good in these times. There is enough real suffering in the world that needs attention.

  7. Whilst most attack this woman, I applaud her! She has used her self to show you a mirror! I applaud her courage and integrity, Those that used items to hurt, degrade and maim her are sick, twisted motha fuckers who are proof that given the opportunity, would do this in their daily lives! Those that scorn this woman are scared of what she shows…..humans! Sick horrible humans!

    1. You are a sick as she is! Nothing artistic or cute or sweet in any of this depraved event! All involved sick as shit! Art is beautiful, this was torture allowed by her and performed by sick assholes! Do not try and put any twist of it being any thing close to art or anything related to art, it’s demented, and discusting period! Just a bunch if wacked out weirdos pushing their sick intentions and desires as far as they could go! One of the most unnerving and insensitive thingsI have EVER seen , and the one who is at the top for blame is the stupid broad that allowed it!

      1. art is not meant to be just “beautiful”. It is meant to make you think and evoke an emotion or two. you can see she was successful, as you are THINKING about it. Some art is beautiful, it is calming and lovely. But much great art, is to make us think, to feel. Even the greatest artists of the past knew this. Even you are abusing this “stupid broad” in your post, still proving her point all these years later.

      2. Lol…stupid broad…Indeed,you define yourself by your choice of words.We can see how you would have behaved.
        Also…Art isn’t just about cute and sweet…That’s Kittens with Big Eyes! There is a difference.

      3. Would you call Goya’s “Fifth of May” beautiful? No, it is an account of tragedy in Spain. Wherever you got your twisted idea that all art is beautiful? Art is a reflection of life, life that is experienced in that time and place. Valuable as an historical account of what is happening in societies. And it doesn’t have to be a painting!

      4. She showed man’s inhumanity to man when they can see other people as non-persons, as the Jews were considered to be during Nazi times. I’m talking about the “Nazi times” back in the 40’s. Not the current day Nazis, where the Muslims are the non-persons.
        And for those who think that’s not art if it makes you think, you don’t know what art is.
        Maybe you prefer more passive art like Bob Ross. That’s okay, too.
        I’d be proud if I had the balls to be an artist such as she.
        Marina Abramovic! She should be famous.

    2. Art is often times used as a mirror to show us the horror and atrocities of humanity. Look at “Guernica” by Picasso. Or was mentioned above, Goya’s “Fifth of May”. Art, whether it be performance or mediums like paintings, has long been used to show us who we are, good or evil.

      If you think art can only be beautiful, cute, or sweet, you really need to go visit some art museums.

    1. And i would have had hard words to all that did the negative things, did she include the reactions of others to that? some of us might have begun with smiles, we wouldn’t keep smiling

  8. False premise. What it shows is the people who knew about this exhibit and the particular artist have a propensity to harm. I suggest trying this again with people outside the world of art galleries & “the arts”. I think most people knew they were on stage and performed what they thought would be shocking. Sad commentary on the people she knows and that move through her sphere.

    1. People who attend art shows tend to be well beyond just the artist’s sphere. That’s especially true in a place like Italy where folks go to see art. Or back when this happened, when a lot more average, everyday people went to art shows.

  9. She set it up.

    SHE put a gun on the table.

    SHE put razors on the table.

    There was a more recent version of this.

    A woman made a box with a curtain, put it on her front and allowed strangers to caress her breasts.

    HER point was, SHE was giving Consent.

    She was caressed by both men and women, but not injured in any way.

    1. well I mean being cut. And all those items are available to most of us everyday. We have the choice everyday. WHY oh WHY would anyone go “This is my one chance to CUT A WOMAN ON THE NECK WITH A RAZOR!” He could have not known where to cut, or how deep, and killed her. If someone gave YOU consent to do whatever, and you had 72 objects, would you pick the gun and razor?

    2. No one put a gun to their head and told them they had to choose the razor. That they needed to use it to cut her skin or cut away her clothing. That was 100% the choice of those involved.

  10. I can’t help but wonder…what were the people observing this (those who weren’t actively abusing this young woman) doing?

  11. I’m surprised. Surely some of the men or women would have sought to stop it. I know for one that I’d maybe have made her do a silly pose or something, but challenged any sicko who wanted to cut her etc. And I’m completely sure I’m not special in any way. Something is missing in this article.

  12. The people that are commenting on this, you do know that Rhythm 0 was done in 1974…..that was 43 years ago………so it shows how things haven’t changed with men….

  13. I sense some question of blame underlying some comments. Is it her own fault? Did she “get what she deserved”? At the hands of human organisms? Don’t we all? For leaving the house? For being born?

  14. Personally, I think all the people who did things to her were people she put up to it, and they were following her instructions.

    This was staged. A stupid perverted display for attention.




  15. Perhaps the most disturbing thing about this article is how many people in the comments section are attacking the artist as opposed to the assholes who revealed their baser selves by assaulting her.

    1. I was just, rather I am amazed, at the number of statements attacking the artists rather than the despicable acts by depraved participants. Sick bastards.

    1. Nope Just evil men. They are all just evil debasers, all men are evil and like to molest everyone. especially those white ones. those white ones they should all die. Kill all the white man.

  16. Perfect (not really) example of the evil that exists in our society. Evil that is supported and pushed by liberals and socialism.

    1. cumming over libs again? wtf is it with you conservatards? the rest of us are quite sick of your crush you’ve got going on for liberals.

  17. Um, this same woman wrote a cookbook in 1996 called Spirit Cooking – Essential Aphrodisiacs in which recipes were given which include ingredents of bodily fluids such as semen and breast milk. She’s a Satanist folks. I wouldn’t feel too bad for her, she get her jollies from vile and wicked things.

  18. To make a point, some times a person has to do what is done in secret. These people did what they wanted to do, and we would not know of this unless she did what she did…6 hours was needed for it to escalate. Criminals don’t just do things; it starts small and escalates. Some hurt animals when they are children; anger escalates. I would like to interview each person and ask what their thoughts were as they did this. Peer pressure because others were doing it? A chance to see what it was like to touch her? An opportunity to cut someone? Their thoughts are just as important as here. PLEASE don’t put her down; I think this was very heroic and if I were younger, I would like to do such experiments. THIS is the only way depravity will be illuminated. These same acts are done in secret in such things as domestic violence…she brought it to the forefront.

  19. The artist’s explanation of Rhythm 0 was interesting. The piece is compelling, outrageous, daring, scary, foolish, brave . . .

  20. It would be very interesting to see what people would do to a man over 6 hours and let them do what they wanted to his body.

  21. I am sorry you experienced this by “humans.” What a sad day when you read what others would do to a woman of art and a woman or man period.

  22. What it really shows is what people (anyone) are willing to do if they think they have someone’s permission. In this case, the person who has sovereignty over the object which is acted upon. In other cases, not so authorized. It’s the old classic experiment of whether someone will cause pain in another if they believe the order to do so is being given by someone in authority or providing some justification (a lab coat will do). Nothing has changed much in 43 years, although I expect in these times it would be more likely someone would actually pull the trigger or cut an artery. The trajectory for violence has only gone up, for people, for nations, in the intervening years. Sad.

  23. You dont need a human object to expose this behaviour. We do this to animals all along knowing they are also fully feeling and sentient beings who cant defend themselves. Worst part is that their torture isnt voluntarily imposed nor ends in 6 hours…they suffer thru it not know why till they die. Humans do not deserve this planet

  24. The artist invited the public to use the equipment she provided without restriction. That is consent. She had to be able to imagine the consequences. We may not like the choices made and surely many of us would not impose them on someone else, but they are predictable. Quite frankly I think she was lucky not to have been shot. That is a risk I could not imagine taking.

  25. The minute I heard she was a liberal satanist my immediate reaction was to reassess the veracity of the performance. It was probably contrived to make people lose faith in humanity and who knows how many of her tormentors were accomplices.

    1. I haven’t found any confirmation that she is. Her centers around the occult, but I don’t think that automatically makes someone a Satanist. Regardless, Satanism is more logical and practical these days.

      If it was as maliciously engineered as you speculate, it makes no difference to me. Actually, no. It does make a difference. It makes me that much more determined to uphold the lighter side of humanity so she failed with me. Just as it takes one person to be cruel for others to follow, it takes one person to be kind for others to do the same.

  26. I have noticed that there are many references to the people of the United States, our troups and leaders of our nation. This piece was not performed in the USA but in Naples Italy. The true demonstration of human depravity is here in your comments. Look at yourselves.

  27. I would have covered her in nothing, leaving her to be a simple nude example of the human form. She is just another woman, like all the rest, with attributes and curves that turn a man’s eye, more so if nude, not worthy of adoration in the sense that she fulfills everyones idea of sensuality. I would have stood as a soldier and cut down anyone who approached her. The example she went for was to reveal humanity, and because it was a new experience(social experiment), people revealed the desires of the human psyche. Yes most were men. Yes they saw the viel of shame and responsibility erased. This is what we were created to do, procreate, and society has barred us from generating, enjoying and maturing what our animalistic brains drive us towards. I am for the legalization of prostitution across the globe, it’s my body and I’ll destroy you if you tell me what I can or cannot do with it!!!

  28. I think she is brave and daring and she invited this, because the entire performance art set up and display provided all these things. She aloud and essentially did invite the worst possible scenarios to happen, because she provided all the dangerous implements. So the point of “art” showcase was to reveal something. And she revealed exactly what she thought might happen. As a test, it passed with flying colors and now she gets to claim all that crazy artists street cred for being daring and brave and a loon.
    Will it be historically significant? only time will tell. This particular artist was not then, nor now is she a stranger to controversy. She invites it and with it, the fame, the glory and some cash along the way. She’s an artist and intelligent enough person, so it was all on her. Yeah people suck, and she revealed how degrading some can be, but she also revealed either her own insanity or extreme gutsyness to allow the “performance” to reach it’s most shocking possible outcome. She provided the tools. Not the public.

  29. it shows only disgusting behavior from so-called humans. Had I been there, I would have put a stop to it, even if it would mean I had to carry her away. Am so, so ashamed of those who hurt her and tried to degrade her.

    1. >Woman asks everyone to do what they want for her in order to create an artistic expression
      >People do it

  30. The director of the exhibit gave everyone permission to do as they wished and they did. He gave them permission to open up their animal nature.
    Can you imagine if a leader of a country did that. What if a leader said, “Throw them out of here. I don’t care what you do to them.” Someone would probably get hurt.
    Would you be the one to stand up to a raging mob who just received that kind of permission, just to aid your fellow man (or woman)?

  31. Wow. So much “ victim blaming” here. The artist made a very powerful statement and I agree it would likely be much worse today.

  32. A few thoughts..not justifying or saying I agree with the behavior,BUT making an honest observation.
    1st..It can’t be called violence or assault if all party’s are accepting of it.It is extreme but consenting behavior.
    2nd.Since she included the objects of destruction she obviously expected the behavior and was encouraging of it.Not much different then some exotic BDSM.
    3rd.contrary to the lies told too sell papers human nature in reality is very dark..Explain the Colosseum’s,Nazi’s,Burnings,and the behavior of Congress if you think otherwise..
    4th. Just as dark as the behavior of those participating you would find her thoughts.Why didn’t she stop at any point?Same as the rest of the participants..she was aroused too and wanted to see how far it would go…You can bet she would have been sorely disappointed and upset if everyone would have just walked out.
    5th.the nature of people is that of a beast.women and men alike.

  33. It’s amazing how stupid the masses are. Who’d want to reposition a model or tie a rope around her or other silly trite things just because she’s allowing it? I mean really. Never mind the sexual stuff. That’s done by sick minds. But REPOSITIONING her, cutting her clothes a bit or putting a rope around her waist? PEOPLE GET A LIFE. GET A BRAIN. DO SOMETHING WITH YOUR LIFE YOU PATHETIC POS’s.


  35. I’m not a superstitious person but i am a curious one and i have to tell yas all that this stinks heavily of ritual. This was not so much an art exhibit as it was a very intentional ritual of some sort, given the nature of it i would assume it was intended as some kind of satanic ritual. It has all the hallmarks, bloodletting, the concious abandonment of humanity and a sense of self, the degredation of the physical body – namely a female who is in one way or another defenceless, the goading and coaxing of evil acts upon wary and/or unwary onlookers or innocents (Anyone that witnessed this in any way can consider themselves innocent provided they did not participate and were not present on the day, that means us) And managing to do it all in such a way as to blind the aforementioned innocents into believeing that she is a victim despite her giving clear clues to the contrary – in so doing they subvert and twist your closely held sense of morals which is another form of corrupting the innocent. – Now I stress, I Don’t believe in any of this stuff but i DO believe that some people do, very seriously do. And all of this stuff she done and had done to her was exactly the kind of thing a creative devil worshipper would come up with.. it’s quite brilliant in a depraved and exceptionally evil kind of way.

  36. Instead of making this a right or wrong….we need to look at how we are as a society…what’s being done to her by the people doing it, lives their lives like this….this is what is happening and we feel the need to do whatever we want when we want. There seems to be no boundaries here and that is sad…As a Mother or a Father would you want your children treated this way regardless what they signed up for. This give us a huge introspection of what types of people are around us daily…

    Most people would look and keep walking….but others chose to stop and do the things that they did…very disturbing.

  37. Very sad, sickening and disturbing. I would have put the flower in her hair and then held the gun to anyone who tried touching, hurting or humiliating her. We’re not all bad.

  38. Maybe the question each one should ask themselves is: what would you have done to her and why?

    This is about intent and awareness.

    And I view her choice as a social experiment.

    Can’t human be responsible and aware of their action and consequent impact/s?

  39. Oh look…a liberal weirdo and all you man hating feminists are eating it up, yapping about misogyny and the evil of men, asking if people have mothers (as if that makes a difference). Your lives must be so empty and pathetic, what’s it like waking up in the morning and asking yourself “how can I be a victim today? I’m sooo oppressed, OMG, I need a latte.”

  40. She knew exactly what would happen. She put herself there, said they could do anything, and put the objects on the table. It was performance “art.” What else could anyone expect? She got exactly what she wanted…people still talk about it 43 years later.

  41. She exactly knew what she’s into. Plus, the demographics? Only weirdos enjoying such “performance arts” (which are utter nonsense in 99.5% of cases, by the way) would show up there. She wasn’t standing in the middle of the town square, in the shopping mall or in the church. She picked her audience carefully, by choosing the Studio Morra in Naples rather than some more tame and decent/public location.

    It’s like allowing your partner to beat you in SM ritual within your intimate four walls and then complain about it. WTF people, you seriously buy this shit? The weirdos that go to such “performing arts” exhibitions know that the whole point is to actually make – lasting record of the performance.

    Who put those guns, those blades, everything else in front and said “do as you please”? The case is closed, she’s a crazy bitch from ex-country that wanted to grab some attention – and she did, so it’s 100% success. The audience did what they were supposed to do – nothing more, nothing less.

    This has nothing to do with abuse, state of nation/mind or anything else, with mysogyny (or whatever the fu.. this word is) or femicide. It is simply a part of schizophrenic “art” that “performing arts” are.

  42. My disgust is for the people who comment against the artist rather than against the depraved acts of the participants. The people hurting her were sick bastards. The people attacking her rather than the participants who hurt her as just as despicable as the hurters.

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  44. This is a strong message and truly shocking! Why would anyone want to humiliate, cut a person with a razor and do all unimaginable things to a person just because there was someone ready to ‘accept’ it? It would not ever cross my mind to be cruel to anyone.

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  46. Just goes to show the depravity of the human race whom have no morals or values. My first thought of what I would do is maybe tuck a flower behind her ear. Then I read about what happened to her. Regardless of what of what you could do, most people lack the value of common decency and moral respect.

  47. Well, after reading all of the above comments I’d say that this experiment continues on, and some of you are a definite fail.

  48. Did anyone stop to think that maybe those people were paid to do what they did? This seems to made up to be real. Especially when they knew that they were being filmed.

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