Kanye West, Beyonce Knowles

Beyoncé says Kanye West was "standing up for art" when he swiped the mic from Taylor Swift at the MTV VMAs.

After receiving Billboard's Woman of the Year award Friday, Beyoncé spoke to radio host and O: The Oprah Magazine editor-at-large Gayle King in one of her first interviews since the tirade.

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"I knew his intentions and I knew he was standing up for art," Beyoncé  told King. "When they didn't call my name, he was completely shocked. When he walked on the stage, I was like 'No, no, no!' He spoke and I'm like, 'Oh, no, no, no!'"

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The singer-actress was grateful that the ceremony at least closed on a good note.

"In the end, it ended up being a great night. Taylor Swift did get her moment and I didn't have to make an acceptance speech," Beyoncé said.

Watch the full interview here: