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Art Spotlight: |Yayoi Kusama

Art Spotlight: |Yayoi Kusama

Instagram didn’t exist in the 1960s when legendary Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama first started creating her Infinity Mirror Rooms, but you’ve almost certainly seen photos from her installations take over your feed in recent years. The rooms are covered in mirrors on all sides, each containing LED lights and sculptures such as silver spheres, mannequins, plastic pumpkins, and inflatable tentacles. In addition to her Infinity Mirror Rooms, Kusama’s notable works include a polka-dot room made up of circle stickers placed by museum-goers, giant pumpkin sculptures, and an installation made up of more than 1,500 orbs. We’ve previously covered her eponymous museum in Tokyo, as well as her installation at The Broad in Los Angeles, and now she has two more exhibits currently on display and one soon to open.

Recently opened in New York at David Zwirner’s contemporary art gallery, Kusama’s new exhibition “Every Day I Pray for Love” features 60 new works, including an Infinity Mirror Room called “Dancing Lights that Flew Up to the Universe.” The brand-new room contains hanging-light spheres that flash from white to red before turning off completely. The viewer is left in the dark for a brief moment before the orbs slowly turn back on. Follow the gallery on Twitter at @davidzwirner for line updates, and make sure to factor in wait time to enter the exhibit, open through December 14.

Now through February 7, 2021, you can get your Kusama fix at the Boston’s Institute of Contemporary Art. The museum dedicated an entire exhibit to Kusama, called “Beyond Infinity: Contemporary Art after Kusama,” featuring 15 of Kusama’s works. The show includes "Love Is Calling," the artist’s biggest Infinity Mirror Room to date, filled with bright neon, polka-dot inflatable tentacles. The exhibit also showcases Kusama's impact on the art world by showcasing works from other contemporary artists who were inspired by Kusama, such as Ellen Gallagher and Josiah McElheny.

This winter, Aspen Art Museum is getting its own Infinity Mirror Room, “Where the Lights in My Heart Go.” This piece was conceptually designed in 1965 and then built and opened to the public in 2016. The 10-by-10-foot stainless-steel square chamber has a mirrored interior similar to Kusama’s other signature Infinity Mirror Rooms. However instead of using LED lights, this project uses daylight to create a kaleidoscope effect inside the room. Natural light shines through small pinholes in the walls and ceiling, reflecting off the mirrored interior and creating thousands of spots around the viewer. The installation is in Aspen from Dec 20, 2019 to May 10, 2020.

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