Physically making literature, art


Entering the other side, Marina

We took great inspiration from one of Marina Abramovic’s pieces in ‘Seven Easy Pieces’ which was her seventh night’s performance of ‘Entering the Other Side’1 performed in 2005 at the Guggenheim Museum. We found her work truly beautiful as she completely captured the impressive presence the Guggenheim has through the size of her gorgeous dress.

This huge dress had us thinking about what we could do in the library and with the concept of ‘pre-performance, performance and post-performance’ taken from ‘The Many Headed Monster’, we created a new concept.


By in-keeping with the library we investigated how we could adapt Marina’s performance. We decided we could make our own dresses out of paper from books that we would rip up in the library and create our outfit. A friend had previously made a dress from magazines, shopping bags and other materials for a textiles exam, and I thought the dress looked absolutely stunning.2

We would purchase books from charity shops and let the librarians know what we are doing in case they panicked, but it would be really interesting to see what people think of what we do, which could be classed as a pre performance. We would then wear the dresses around the library striking poses like Marina for a lengthy period of time, and afterwards, tear off our dresses to then be left as ‘art’. It reveals the simplicity of the infinity of language and how it books can be shaped in different ways to create new books, very much like the library of babel.

It also means that we are being part of the libraries architecture, and the fact we are wearing ‘books’ means we are making the familiar – unfamiliar. As we are making a book into art, but isn’t literature and language already an art? Therefore are we making it a visual art, and drawing attention to that fact as it is something we usually take advantage of.

Word count: 346

Works Cited

Abramovic, Marina Entering the Other Side (2005) at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum on November 15, 2005.


  1. Photograph by Kathryn Carr, The Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, New York. []
  2. Design by Sukie Buzzacot 2009 Photographed by Sukie Buzzacot []
Posted: February 27th, 2013
Categories: Borges, Early Research, Les dames des livres, Library, Marina Abramovic, Performance Art
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