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Jay Z, Lady Gaga help push Marina Abramovic's art museum past Kickstarter goal

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Marina Abramovic Institute (Kickstarter)
Marina Abramovic Institute (Kickstarter)

It took a shared stage with Jay Z and a bit of nudity from Lady Gaga, but Marina Abramović has surpassed her $600,000 Kickstarter goal to build an art museum unlike any other. The Marina Abramović Institute, or MAI, promises to host art performances that turn museum goers into participants rather than leaving them as observers. The institute will house lectures and a library of assorted "time-based and immaterial works." With a total of $661,452 pledged, the museum is currently set to open its doors sometime in 2015.

Abramović, who is regarded by many as the world's most successful living performance artist, kicked in $1.5 million of her own money to bring the MAI into reality before turning to Kickstarter. Additionally, she's hired some museum staff and purchased a 1920's era building in the upstate New York city of Hudson. The cash from Kickstater is more or less a finishing fund to complete an already started renovation on the institute site. "I really loved the building immediately," Abramović says in a video detailing her vision for the space. "This was where I wanted to put everything I actually knew. But also to be some kind of marriage between art, technology, science, spirituality."

You'll need at least six hours to spare

To get into MAI, visitors will have to agree to spend at least six hours inside and allow their personal belongings to be stored in a safety deposit box. Once attendees agree to those terms, everyone visiting MAI will have to wear a white lab coat and noise canceling headphones before going through a series of artistic exercises and experiences that Abramović has developed. Slow motion walking, extended eye contact with a stranger, and closed-eye mediation in a cave of crystals will be among the fun. "You come here not just to see the work, but you come here to change yourself through the work," Abramović says. "In the entire world, there is nothing that exists like this institute."