Yayoi Kusama, a world-famed Japanese avant-garde sculptor, artist and writer, will exhibit her stunning contemporary installation artworks in Hanoi from May 25 to July 28.
The exhibit, called “Yayoi Kusama: Obsessions” and set to take place at the Japan Foundation Center for Cultural Exchange, 27 Quang Trung, Hoan Kiem district, will feature Kusama’s hugely popular, hallmark installation collection.
The prized collection includes Kusama’s legendary installation work titled “Narcissus Garden”, which features 1,500 inox balls, as well as nine huge, polka dotted objects called “Guidepost to the New Space”.
The main exhibition hall will provide the setting for “Dots Obsessions”, one of Kusama’s signature installations, in which visitors can indulge in visually striking installations with mirrors, dots and balloons.
The small kitchen in the appendix building will feature her relatively new installation “I’m Here, but Nothing”, where visitors can experience the illusive 2D and 3D effects with illuminated dots.
The exhibit is part of the programs to celebrate the Japan-Vietnam Friendship Year in 2013.
Kusama, 84, said her passion for polka dots stems from her childhood, when she saw polka dots any place she went. She began painting at ten with the colored polka dots, breathing her hallucinations into her work from the outset.
In her career spanning over seven decades, Kusama has worked extensively in painting, drawing, sculpture, film, performance and installation. Her obsessive repetitions and patterns of dots have been widely celebrated and established as her trademark.
Kusama’s enigmatic state has also become a curse. Since 1974, she has voluntarily admitted herself to a mental hospital in Tokyo, where she has spent the rest of her life. From here, she continues to produce artworks in a variety of media, as well as launching a literary career by publishing several novels, a poetry collection and an autobiography.
A precursor of the pop art, minimalist and feminist art movements, Kusama influenced contemporaries such as Andy Warhol and Claes Oldenburg. Kusama is now acknowledged as one of the most important living artists to come out of Japan, and an important figure of the avant-garde.
Kusama has received numerous international accolades including the Order of Arts and Letters (2003/France), the Order of the Rising Sun (2006/Japan), the Praemium Imperiale (2006/Japan) and Person of Cultural Merit (2009/Japan) as well as the National Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006.
It is normal for her artworks to fetch millions of dollars with pieces going for between US$4 mil to US$6 mil at recent auctions, the highest price offered to an active female artist in the world.