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Marina's Piazza at MoMA
Rachel Smith Althof

Over the 75 days Marina was present, her bed turned into a piazza.  People repeatedly visited to sit with her again and again, and others
repeatedly visited just be around the square.  A sub-cultural phenomenon buzzed around the clearly defined cube of light.  People claimed
roles, and became active members of the community surrounding the square.

The man who repeatedly sat with Marina, Paco Blancas, had clearly taken on a leadership role.  He came to sit with Marina only 21 times, but
visited the square countless more.  Intrigued with numbers, his intention was to sit with Marina exactly 21 times, even tattooing the number on
his arm.  Marina sat for 75 days.  Paco created a book containing 75 people’s written accounts of their experiences sitting with Abramovic,
each person writing precisely 75 words.  He presented the book to Marina on the final, 75th, day of her performance.  I wrote 75 words - it was
too late for the compilation, but I’d still like to present them:

She was staring back.  I wanted to connect with the person before me, but at times I wanted to meditate.  She was staring back.  My heart was
racing; I don’t like the spotlight.  She was staring back.  Solaced by midnight eyes under a jetty of dark hair swimming in bright, bright light.  
The intensity grew.  It grew into a wave of calm before intensifying once again.  She was staring back.  Meanwhile, I blinked and breathed.
Rachel Smith Althof
Streaming provided by Cameras courtesy of Panasonic Inc.