Art is a necessary part of life, as is blood, so it makes sense that some avant-garde artists would combine the two. While many of these pieces are extreme, as they may involve self-mutilation, they stand as intriguing examples of the incredible lengths artists will go to in order to create.
• Marina Abramovic brought the world a disturbing performance art piece in which audience members were invited to use various cutting instruments on her. The piece ended in a struggle after one audience member attempted to shoot Abramovic.
• The performance art of Chris Burden often involves painful experiences, including voluntarily being punctured, crucified and shot in various different pieces.
• Billy X. Curmano set about to make a statement on worldwide violence with his piece bloodbath, where he had a nurse draw his blood with a standard hypodermic needle. Curmano proceeded to bite open the blood vials, which he then poured over a globe, listing off all of the countries currently engaged in a war at the time.
• Less self-injurious than other artists listed here, but no less boundary-breaking, Hermann Nitsch creates performance art pieces where audience members assist him in the ritual sacrifice of various animals. After the killings, the internal organs are placed atop members of the audience.
• The French artist Orlan films herself undergoing plastic surgery, where she converses, eats, and performs other actions while remaining conscious throughout occasionally bloody procedures.
• Aptly-named Gina Pane has produced a series of obscure feminist pieces where she engages in self-mutilation in order to make statement on how women are objectified in popular culture.
• Petr Stembera also has a piece in which he had blood drawn hypodermically. He then made a drink from mixing his blood with urine and hair.
• In order to protest abuses by the government, Thai protesters in 2010 used large amounts of their own blood to ink poems, slogans, and pictures.
Even if you’re not a natural artist or find these pieces shocking, you may be interested in other blood-related work, such as a career as a medical assistant. Research medical assistant colleges and medical assistant programs in order to learn more about this exciting field.