The US pop singer also made a surprisingly big announcement of her new album coming in October.
Taylor Swift has won the top honor at MTV's annual Video Music Awards for a 10-minute version of her 2012 breakup song "All Too Well".
The singer also made a surprise announcement during Sunday's ceremony of a new album coming in October.
She thanked fans from the stage at the Prudential Center in New Jersey as she accepted the honor. "All Too Well" is one of the past hits Swift re-recorded after a dispute with her former record label.
"We wouldn't have been able to make this short film if it weren't for you, the fans," Swift said, before revealing that she will release her next album on October 21.
Puerto Rican singer Bad Bunny was named artist of the year and was handed his Moon Person statue at New York's Yankee Stadium, where he was playing a concert in front of a sold-out crowd.
Former Disney Channel star Dove Cameron, singer of hits "Breakfast" and "Boyfriend," was named best new artist. "This year has been so wild," she said, and dedicated her award "to all the queer kids out there."
Other winners included Harry Styles, who received the album of the year trophy for "Harry's House" and accepted via video from nearby Madison Square Garden, where he was about to perform.
Actor Johnny Depp, who had been shunned by the entertainment business during a defamation fight with ex-wife Amber Heard, appeared briefly throughout the show, his face digitally inserted inside the helmet of a floating astronaut.
"I need the work," joked the actor.
Nicki Minaj was celebrated with the Video Vanguard award for her career of hits. The singer performed a medley of "Anaconda," "Super Bass" and other songs before paying tribute to artists who inspired her.
"I wish that Whitney Houston and Michael Jackson were here," Minaj said. "I wish that people understood what they meant, what they were going through (and) took mental health seriously."
Snoop Dogg and Eminem rapped “From the D 2 the LBC” as animated images inside "Otherside," an upcoming metaverse platform from NFT and cryptocurrency company Yuga Labs.
Other performers included K-pop band Blackpink and global icon honoree the Red Hot Chili Peppers, who were introduced by comedians Cheech and Chong.