Spotlight: An exhibition of Yayoi Kusama’s most iconic designs takes place at PAD London


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What do you want to know: Starting at the art and design fair PAD London, which is open until October 16, 2022, before opening on October 27 as an online exhibition, Galerie von Vertes in Zurich presents “Yayoi Kusama: Inside Out”, a solo exhibition of works by pioneering Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama (b. 1929). Featuring “soft” works on paper, paintings and sculptures, the exhibition encompasses some of Kusama’s most iconic motifs, such as the pumpkin and the repeating dot pattern, as well as examples of more experimental efforts, such as mixed techniques. bronze shoes (1999). The exhibition is accompanied by a richly illustrated catalog that includes a wealth of biographical information and critical insight into the life and career of one of the most important artists of our time.

Why we love it: Kusama’s mesmerizing dots – or “infinity nets” as they are dubbed in some series – have long been a hallmark of her work. Developed from hallucinations the artist first experienced as a child, the bright and variable-sized dots evolved over the course of his career; for example, in this exhibition they are seen in their most fundamental integral form in Points (1999), as well as figuratively Butterfly (1990) – not as the focus, but as accents on the wings of the insect. Dots became the artist’s preferred method of shading, as can be seen in lemon squash (1992) and Pumpkin (1990). As the catalog delves into, Kusama has faced an incredible amount of adversity in her life and career due to gender discrimination and the stigma around mental illness. The exhibition highlights how Kusama’s perseverance, both personally and stylistically, over the decades has resulted in a highly recognizable artistic style that has captivated the world.

According to the Gallery: “’Yayoi Kusama: Inside Out’ features paintings, soft sculptures and works on paper dating from 1952 to 2011 and delves into Kusama’s artistic ability to rise like a phoenix from the ashes of hardship and trauma. [Kusama is] a radical woman and a non-silent person of color, using the media to her advantage to create awareness by employing disruption and shock to undermine traditional hierarchical structures in society. [She provokes] people to show their true colors, animating his contemporaries to accept each other for who they are, regardless of race, origin, gender, religion, disability or sexual orientation.

See more featured works by Yayoi Kusama below.

Yayoi Kusama, Pumpkin (1990). Courtesy of Galerie von Vertes.

Yayoi Kusama, Lemon Squash (1992).  Courtesy of Galerie von Vertes.

Yayoi Kusama, lemon squash (1992). Courtesy of Galerie von Vertes.

Yayoi Kusama, Infinity Nets (XAZ) (1999).  Courtesy of Galerie von Vertes.

Yayoi Kusama, Infinite Arrays (XAZ) (1999). Courtesy of Galerie von Vertes.

Yayoi Kusama, Butterfly (1990).  Courtesy of Galerie von Vertes.

Yayoi Kusama, Butterfly (1990). Courtesy of Galerie von Vertes.

Yayoi Kusama, Dots (1999).  Courtesy of Galerie von Vertes.

Yayoi Kusama, Points (1999). Courtesy of Galerie von Vertes.

“Yayoi Kusama: Inside Out” is on view at PAD London until October 16, 2022. The online exhibition will be open from October 27 to December 15, 2022.

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