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September 20, 2013 Repository 94: Precurser to Marina Abromovic | Buddhist Priestess Kissing Cobra Posted In: contemporary art, perspective

Image courtesy of the artist, Marina Abromovic and MOMA

Image courtesy of the artist, Marina Abromovic and MOMA


After seeing a black snake at my front door this past summer in full stand up mode, as if he was going to ring the door bell, I’ve been slightly attune to all things snake. It was just a silly garter snake, but it was standing up for goodness sake! I believe in the mythology of snakes, that there is simply something there beyond words. So after viewing an old DVD of Joseph Campbell today where there was an amazing clip of a Buddhist Priestess kissing a king cobra snake three times, I was aghast.

I quickly looked it up on Youtube, my 4-year old by my side. He couldn’t help himself – “Mommy, why are snakes even invented, they don’t do anything!” After thinking some more he chimes in, “I think they were invented to help the rocks and stuff”. After watching the short film on kissing snakes, he then asked, “Mommy why do you have to brush your hair before you do it?”

Brushing hair, and kissing snakes sound an awful lot like two of the high priestess of performance art Marina Abromovic’s works. The video where she famously brushes her hair and repeats “Art must be beautiful, artist must be beautiful.” The other where she allows a snake to slither up her neck and head (and nose!!).

So here is the very, very old footage of said Buddhist Priestess in Myanmar kissing a very, very angry snake, which perhaps a very, very young Marina may have watched in awe and deep respect for such a powerful woman. I certainly did:


Myanmar Priestess kissing king cobra snake three times to “help save her village”.

PS. I wouldn’t recommend letting 4-year olds watch above video, mine is now refusing to go camping with us this weekend. 😉 Happy Friday!!

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1 Comment

  1. featsandfamines • October 7, 2013

    Reblogged this on Feats and Famines and commented:
    Not for the faint of heart!! Reply


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