Marina Abramović Is Making People Cry Again

Famous performance artist and tear-jerker Marina Abramović's new show opened this week, and by one account, she's still making people cry.

According to the BBC, the performance finds Abramović interacting with attendees at London's Serpentine Gallery, taking them by the hand, and gently whispering zenlike phrases in their ears:

Phones, cameras and even watches are banned, as Abramovic takes people by the hand and encourages them to spend time focusing on the bare white walls.

"Take in the silence," she whispered to one. "Just be present."

As everyone stood around, totally present, some yearned for a deeper connection with the grandmother of performance art:

"I really wanted to connect with her, so I said a little prayer," said Sophie, a student sculptor from London.

"Connecting with her presence was really special. She said, 'stay here as long as you like, take deep breaths, be present'.

"It was perfect, really."

Be present. Take deep breaths. And let the tears flow:

"Just to sit and get lost in one's thoughts, I think it's very relaxing," said Andrew, a psychiatrist visiting the UK from San Francisco.

"And certainly some people were crying, too, so perhaps it brings up some thoughts that one pushes down from normal life."

If the devotion sounds a little silly, remember: we need Marina Abramović. Take it from Marina Abramović:

"Everything is there, in possibility. We need the public, we need me, and we need chemistry."

[Image via MoMA/Flickr]