Psychedelic Experimentation

The kaleidoscopic and adventurous spirit of Yayoi Kusama is celebrated in a recent exhibition at Hirshhorn, Washington D.C. Infinity Mirrors is an examination of her lasting legacy and talent, as shown through her continued investigation into the limits of creative mediums over a 65-year career. Throughout her life, she has worked across a wide range of disciplines, from performance art to environmental installations, however, it’s vivid colours and patterns that remain a recurrent theme.

Visitors have an unprecedented opportunity to explore six Infinity Mirror Rooms, in which darkness, mirrors and pinpricks of light work together to produce an immersive atmosphere. It gives the disconcerting yet beautiful experience of being in an endless space, broken only by points of light in the distance. These creations muse on the ideas of the infinite and the limitless. Alongside the striking physical journey through these rooms, a selection of other key works demonstrates the innovative vision of this globally recognised artist.

From a foundation rooted in radical performances in the 1960s, Kusama’s oeuvre constantly pushes the boundaries of stylistic convention, with recent work showing a similarly adventurous approach to painting. The collection, My Eternal Soul (2016), encapsulates both a surreal and instinctual methodology, with powerful imagery and pulsating combinations of colour. Another highlight includes the monumental Pumpkin, installed in the Hirshhorn Plaza. For Kusama, pumpkins represent a source of radiant energy, a motif from which she has taken inspiration since childhood. The sculpture acts as a whimsical and alternative self-portrait indicative of her unique creative vision.

These multidisciplinary compositions, which question a vast array of ideas, capture the full spectrum of her talent. The exhibition is an unforgettable sensory journey through the mind of one of the most culturally significant artists of our time. Following the display at the gallery, Infinity Mirrors begins the most extensive North American tour of Kusama’s work in nearly two decades.

Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors, Hirshhorn, Washington D.C, displayed from 23 February – 14 May.

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1. Yayoi Kusama, Infinity Mirrors