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24 September
5 March 2023

Marina Abramović: Gates and Portals

“This is an attempt to do something different, because in a normal exhibition you’re just a silent witness. At Modern Art Oxford, rather than just viewing artworks in front of you, you will be partaking in an experience that will be happening to you.” – Marina Abramović

Pioneering performance artist Marina Abramović (b. 1946, Belgrade, lives and works in New York) presents a new site-specific performance-based exhibition at Modern Art Oxford.  

Gates and Portals explores transitional states of being, with each visitor participating as a performer with a small group of others. During the exhibition visitors will encounter gates and portals that prompt contemplation of bodily awareness and elevated consciousness.

The exhibition was developed following a research residency at the Pitt Rivers Museum, Oxford in summer 2021. To complement Gates and Portals, a case installation of a film and new drawings made by the artist during her residency will be on display at the Pitt Rivers Museum.


Friends of Modern Art Oxford get free entry to Marina Abramovic: Gates and Portals. Click here to discover more about joining as a Friend.


Marina Abramović has conceived of this show as her most radical because the role of the performer is given to the visitor. The artist herself will not be present during the exhibition.

Advance booking is essential. You will not be able to book tickets at the gallery and so must book online ahead of your visit.

Due to the nature of the exhibition, you must book a specific time and date to come. If you are late to the slot that you have booked, you may not be allowed entry to the exhibition.

This particular exhibition invites individual experiences for up to an hour of meditative contemplation across the galleries and so we advise an age limit of 8+. If you are visiting with children please consider whether this would be an enjoyable experience for them, prior to buying a ticket. All children under 12 must be supervised by a parent/carer at all times throughout the experience.

Please allow at least an hour to participate in the exhibition.

At the beginning of the experience you will be checked in by our friendly front of house staff who will ask you to put your belongings (including watches, phones, handbags and coats) in a secure locker for the duration of the experience. You will then be led upstairs by facilitators trained in the Abramović method.

The exhibition will require visitors to stand for long periods of time. Seating will be made available for those who want/need it.

This show contains elements of sensory deprivation as well as very bright lights. Visitors will be requested to engage with these as part of their visit. Please note, this is optional but a key part of the experience designed by Marina Abramović.

The exhibition contains magnets which may not be suitable for people who are pregnant or people who have a pacemaker or similar medical device.

This experience invites visitors to reflect and look inward, and as such it prompts a range of responses. Some visitors have found the experience mindful and relaxing, however for others it has been challenging and uncomfortable.

If you have any questions about the exhibition experience before booking or require specific access support, please email

Marina Abramović: Gates and Portals

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Marina Abramović: Gates and Portals activity sheet

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Watch: Marina Abramović short film

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In the museum with Marina Abramović

Go behind-the-scenes of Marina Abramović's research residency with her assistant and PhD student, Hannah Healey.
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Marina Abramović: Gates and Portals is supported by

The Pitt Rivers Museum