See Yayoi Kusama's Splendour of Love in London

Victoria Miro's exhibition of seven new sculptures and twelve recent paintings by the artist opens tomorrow
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Splendour of Love (2013), by Yayoi Kusama. Courtesy Yayoi Kusama Studio Inc., Ota Fine Arts, Tokyo and Victoria Miro, London © Yayoi Kusama. Photography © Stephen White
Splendour of Love (2013), by Yayoi Kusama. Courtesy Yayoi Kusama Studio Inc., Ota Fine Arts, Tokyo and Victoria Miro, London © Yayoi Kusama. Photography © Stephen White

Few artists have as recognisable a catalogue of works as the 84-year-old Japanese painter and sculptor Yayoi Kusama. She has been producing her bright, dotted works since the late 1930s - we reproduce a 1939 dotted drawing in our monograph - and she continues to cover her pieces in these repetitive patterns or 'infinity nets' as she calls them, today.

 

A Tale in Blue is Filled With My Life (2009), by Yayoi Kusama. Courtesy Yayoi Kusama Studio Inc., Ota Fine Arts, Tokyo and Victoria Miro, London © Yayoi Kusama. Photography © Stephen White
A Tale in Blue is Filled With My Life (2009), by Yayoi Kusama. Courtesy Yayoi Kusama Studio Inc., Ota Fine Arts, Tokyo and Victoria Miro, London © Yayoi Kusama. Photography © Stephen White

This latest collection of new paintings and sculptures, which go on show at her London gallery, Victoria Miro, from tomorrow, continue in this vein. These 12 canvasses and seven sculptures certainly appear to pursue the same deep psychic preoccupations. Yet, as the gallery observes, some elements in this new show could herald a shift in her practice.

The sculptures, or 'accumulations' as Kusama styles them, incorporate motifs, previously restricted to the artist's paintings. As Victoria Miro says in its exhibition notes: "the sculptures appear as though Kusama's images have been released from the canvases they are surrounded by and have organised themselves into three-dimensional forms."

 

The Daybreak: The Arrival of Morning (2010) by Yayoi Kusama. Courtesy Yayoi Kusama Studio Inc., Ota Fine Arts, Tokyo and Victoria Miro, London © Yayoi Kusama. Photography © Stephen White
The Daybreak: The Arrival of Morning (2010) by Yayoi Kusama. Courtesy Yayoi Kusama Studio Inc., Ota Fine Arts, Tokyo and Victoria Miro, London © Yayoi Kusama. Photography © Stephen White

Early accumulations often incorporated threatening, phallic forms, while Splendour of Love seems to be a more hopeful, feminine creation. To find out more, visit the exhibition, which is free and opens tomorrow. For further insight into this compelling contemporary artist, take a look at our peerless monograph.


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