Avant-garde sculptor, painter and novelist Yayoi Kusama is opening her exhibtion. Today at Whitney Museum Of American Art in New York. The exhibition is running from July 12th till September 30th, 2012. This exhibition is organized in collaboration with Tate Modern, London and Louis Vuitton. If you are in NY the next days and weeks: GO! It is a must see event.
Avant-garde is the theme of our 2nd collection and we already introduced you in the new issue to this great exhibition. Yayoi Kusama is an international super star. She is the queen of Polka dots. Well known for her dense patterns of polka dots and nets, as well as her hallucinatory large-scale environments, Yayoi Kusama’s art encompasses an astonishing variety of media, including painting, drawing, sculpture, film, performance, and immersive installation. Born in Matsumoto, Japan, in 1929, Kusama came to the U.S. and found herself at the epicenter of the New York art world in the 1960s, where she came into contact with such artists as Donald Judd, Andy Warhol, Joseph Cornell, and Claes Oldenburg. After achieving fame and notoriety with groundbreaking art happenings and events, she returned to her native country in 1973 and is now Japan’s most prominent contemporary artist. Organized by Tate Modern in collaboration with the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid; the Centre Pompidou, Paris; and the Whitney, where the show’s installation is being overseen by curator David Kiehl. Accompanied by a major catalogue and the first English translation of Kusama’s autobiography, Infinity Net.
What? Where? When?
Yayoi Kusama – The Exhibition
July 12th till September 30th, 2012
In these excerpts from Kusama: Princess of Polka Dots directed by Heather Lenz, artist Yayoi Kusama, gallerist Richard Castellone, and Tate curator Frances Morris discuss Kusama’s childhood in Japan, her move to New York, and the themes of infinity and accumulation in her work.
Born in Nagano Prefecture. Started to paint using polka dots and nets as motifs at around age ten ,and created fantastic paintings in watercolors, pastels and oils. Went to the United States in 1957. Showed large paintings, soft sculptures, and environmental sculptures using mirrors and electric lights. In the latter 1960s, staged many happenings such as body painting festivals, fashion shows and anti-war demonstrations. Launched media-related activities such as film production and newspaper publication. In 1968, the film “Kusama’s Self-Obliteration”which Kusama produced and starred in won a prize at the Fourth International Experimental Film Competition in Belgium and the Second Maryland Film Festival and the second prize at the Ann Arbor Film Festival. Held exhibitions and staged happenings also in various countries in Europe.
Returned to Japan in 1973. While continuing to produce and show art works, Kusama issued a number of novels and anthologies. In 1983, the novel “The Hustlers Grotto of Christopher Street” won the Tenth Literary Award for New Writers from the monthly magazine Yasei Jidai. In 1986, held solo exhibitions at the Musee Municipal, Dole and the Musee des Beaux-Arts de Calais, France, in 1989, solo exhibitions at the Center for International Contemporary Arts, New York and the Museum of Modern Art, Oxford, England. In 1993, participated in the 45th Venice Biennale. Began to create open-air sculptures in 1994. Produced open-air pieces for the Fukuoka Kenko Center, the Fukuoka Municipal Museum of Art, the Bunka-mura on Benesse Island of Naoshima, Kirishima Open-Air Museum and Matsumoto City Museum of Art, , in front of Matsudai Station, Niigata,TGV’s Lille-Europe Station in France, Beverly Gardens Park, Beverly hills, Pyeonghwa Park, Anyang and a mural for the hallway at subway station in Lisbon.
Began to show works mainly at galleries in New York in 1996. A solo show held in New York in the same year won the Best Gallery Show in 1995/96 and the Best Gallery Show in 1996/97 from the International Association of Art Critics in 1996. From1998 to 1999, a major retrospective of Kusama’s works which opened at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art traveled to the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Walker Art Center and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo. In 2000, Kusama won The Education Minister’s Art Encouragement Prize and Foreign-Minister’s Commendations. Her solo exhibition that started at Le Consortium in France in the same year traveled to Maison de la culture du Japon, Paris, KUNSTHALLEN BRANDTS ÆDEFABRIK, Denmark, Les Abattoirs, Toulouse, KUNSTHALLE Wien, Art Sonje Center, Seoul. Received the Asahi Prize in 2001, the Medal with Dark Navy Blue Ribbon in 2002, the French Ordre des Arts et des Lettres (Officier), and the Nagano Governor Prize (for the contribution in encouragement of art and culture) in 2003.
In 2004, Her solo exhibition “KUSAMATRIX” started at Mori Museum in Tokyo. This exhibition drew visitors totaling 520,000 people. In the same year,another solo exhibition started at The National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo In 2005, it traveled to The National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto, Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art, Contemporary Art Museum, Kumamoto, Matsumoto City Museum of Art. Received the 2006 National Lifetime Achievement Awards, the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Losette and The Praemium Imperiale -Painting- in 2006.
As the preeminent institution devoted to the art of the United States, the Whitney Museum of American Art presents the full range of twentieth-century and contemporary American art, with a special focus on works by living artists. The Whitney is dedicated to collecting, preserving, interpreting, and exhibiting American art, and its collection—arguably the finest holding of twentieth-century American art in the world—is the Museum’s key resource. The Museum’s signature exhibition, the Biennial, is the country’s leading survey of the most recent developments in American art.
Innovation has been a hallmark of the Whitney since its beginnings. It was the first museum dedicated to the work of living American artists and the first New York museum to present a major exhibition of a video artist (Nam June Paik in 1982). Such figures as Jasper Johns, Cy Twombly, and Cindy Sherman were given their first museum retrospectives by the Whitney. The Museum has consistently purchased works within the year they were created, often well before the artists became broadly recognized. The Whitney was the first museum to take its exhibitions and programming beyond its walls by establishing corporate-funded branch facilities, and the first museum to undertake a program of collection-sharing (with the San Jose Museum of Art) in order to increase access to its renowned collection.