Yayoi Kusama’s art is in London this month as part of a new exhibition at the Victoria Miro gallery. Her internationally known work is obsessive and overwhelming, presenting the world as a polka-dotted dream land, featured in Hi-Fructose Vol 25. The word “extraordinary” is overused in writing about contemporary art but we can make an exception for Kusama, who has been selected as one of TIME Magazine’s World’s 100 Most Influential People for conquering both the art and fashion world. “Dots are a symbol of the world, the cosmos; the earth is a dot. The sun, the moon, the stars are all made up of dots. You and me, we are dots,” she once said.
Spanning the gallery’s three locations and garden, Kusama’s exhibition at Victoria Miro features new paintings from the ongoing series “My Eternal Soul”, pumpkin sculptures, and mirror rooms. It is the first time her mirror rooms have gone on view in London since her major retrospective at Tate Modern in 2012: “All the Eternal Love I Have for the Pumpkins”, “Chandelier of Grief” and “Where the Lights in My Heart Go.” The pumpkin, another important motif throughout her career, is present in the form of new mirror polished bronze sculptures.
Kusama’s mirror rooms make a physical space of the “infinity net” patterns used in her drawings and paintings: “The original idea for this work dates back to my childhood. I was making paintings in small, medium, and large sizes then, without sleeping at night sometimes. Those paintings, 2 or 3,000 in total, were rapidly sublimated within myself and developed into sculptures. In other words, underlying the mirror room were my early paintings. To create an endless mirror room had been my long-cherished dream.” Yayoi Kusama’s exhibition is on view through July 30th, 2016.