Positive Zero
Abramovic / Ulay, 1983, 22'00''

Unable to play video - your browser does not support any of the available video types.


'Positive Zero' (90 minutes) was performed three times during the Holland Festival in June 1983: at Theater Carré in Amsterdam, Muziekcentrum Vredenburg in Utrecht and De Doelen in Rotterdam. It is not, in fact, a performance, but rather a theatrical work in which, apart from Ulay and Abramovic, eighteen other people particpated, including six Tibetan Lamas and two Australian Aboriginals. By means of allegorical 'tableaux vivants', the actors represent the four stages of life, with the emphasis on the relationship between man and woman. While the tableaux vivants are being enacted, the Tibetan Lamas chant or the Aboriginals play their didgeridoos. The end of the registration of 'Positive Zero' is a spiritual climax. The six Tibetan Lamas are sitting in a semiircle, chanting. 'Positive Zero' is not consistent with Ulay and Abramovic's earlier performances, but can rather be considered a forerunner of their later works ('Continental Video', 1983-1986). In these works, Ulay and Abramovic themselves are no longer seen to be performing; their subject matter has shifted away from the artist's body. Read more...

  • Date: 1983
  • Length: 22'00''
  • Type: Video
  • Copyrights: All rights reserved (c) LIMA
  • Genre: performance (artwork genre), theatre
  • Keywords: registration (technique), body, life, music (subject), religion, third world/non-western culture