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PLACEText: Mike Sullivan

3F Gallery Installation View
Yayoi Kusama Museum, 3F Gallery Installation View © YAYOI KUSAMA

The building incorporates an entrance, reception and shop on the 1st floor, three floors of gallery space and on the 5th floor a rooftop gallery and browsing space. The inaugural exhibition is based around her latest painting series “My Eternal Soul” (3rd floor) and includes 16 artworks from that series as well as 27 artworks from her drawing series “Love Forever” (2nd floor). The 4th floor has a new mirror room entitled “PUMPKINS SCREAMING ABOUT LOVE BEYOND INFINITY” and the top floor has a new sculpture called “Starry Pumpkin.”

Yayoi Kusama “PUMPKINS SCREAMING ABOUT LOVE BEYOND INFINITY”, 2017, Mixed media, Variable dimensions © YAYOI KUSAMA

Entering the museum, each floor incorporates a natural flow of movement which encourages going forward. Most galleries have square white rooms, one enters and then stays stationary within it, sometimes moving from one wall to the next, but in this gallery the walls curve round and you find yourself almost ‘curving’ with it too. For this first exhibition the walls feel like they have been covered in art in an explosion of artistic creativity, and no doubt this is representative of what future exhibitions be displayed like as well. As anyone who has entered a Yayoi Kusama mirror room can attest, entering her latest mirror room is again like stepping into infinity and leaves one feeling exhausted. It is an exhaustion brought on by satiation, her art fills you and stamps a deep impression upon you.

5F Rooftop Gallery
Yayoi Kusama Museum, 5F Rooftop Gallery © YAYOI KUSAMA

The museum’s director Akira Tatehata explains: Over many years the artist has received international acclaim and attention and now, as she strives to create vigorously, it could be said that it is Kusama’s second golden age. The museum has set aside a space to present her brand-new works so that visitors can witness the breadth of her vivid brush strokes.

Set in an amazing building in one of the greatest cities of the world, there is no better location for Yayoi Kusama’s second golden age of artistry.

Yayoi Kusama Museum
Opening hours: 11:00 – 17:00 (last admission 16:00) *Four times a day admission system
Tickets have to be purchased in advance via the official website (from the first day of each month for entry in the month after next).
Address: 107 Benten-cho, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo
Tel: +81(3) 5273 1778

Text: Mike Sullivan

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Stephen Cheetham