Kusama Takes New York

“Kusama: Cosmic Infinity,” at the New York Botanical Garden

Contemporary Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama is one of the most popular artists in the world, drawing millions to experience her immersive installations.

Exclusively at NYBG, Kusama reveals her lifelong fascination with the natural world, beginning with her childhood spent in the greenhouses and fields of her family’s seed nursery. Her artistic concepts of obliteration, infinity, and eternity are inspired by her intimate engagement with the colors, patterns, and life cycles of plants and flowers.

Spectacular installations feature Kusama’s multifaceted art, including monumental floral sculptures that transform NYBG’s 250-acre landmark landscape.

Across the grounds, discover installations that include the artist’s legendary Narcissus Garden (1966/2021) in the Native Plant Garden. Nearby, marvel at Ascension of Polka Dots on the Trees (2002/2021), where soaring trees are adorned in vibrant red with white polka dots. The horticultural spectacle across the landscape changes throughout the seasons, with tulips and irises in spring, dahlias and sweetpeas in summer, and pumpkins and chrysanthemums in fall.

In and around the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory, Kusama’s work comes to life through a seasonal progression of violas, salvias, zinnias, chrysanthemums, and other colorful annuals, while her plant-inspired, polka-dotted sculptures are nestled among meadow grasses, bellflowers, and water lilies, including Hymn of Life—Tulips (2007) in the Conservatory Courtyard Hardy Pool. Her mesmerizing Pumpkins Screaming About Love Beyond Infinity (2017) is on view in the Visitor Center gallery.

Installation shot, Courtesy New York Botanical Garden

In the LuEsther T. Mertz Library Building, explore paintings, biomorphic collages, sculpture, and works on paper inspired by Kusama’s deep knowledge of nature, and in the adjacent Ross Gallery, enjoy Walking Piece (ca. 1966), a multiscreen digital projection of a performance work from the artist’s collection.

Visit the Exhibition

“Yayoi Kusama: Infinity,” David Benrimon Fine Art

A selection of her most representative prints from 1983-2004, Installation Shot, David Benrimon Fine Art

While widely acclaimed for her painting, drawing and sculptural oeuvres, Kusama’s print practice is often overlooked. Kusama created her first print in 1979 and over the past 40 years has published over 400 prints and multiples. Through this medium, Kusama reworks her infinity-net and polka-dot motifs in her recurring subject matter of Pumpkins, Flowers and Fruit Baskets among others.

I have been making prints ever since I was captivated by their allure, and am constantly overwhelmed by the brilliance arising from within the process of making them… I create prints with all my heart for people who love them. Whenever I work on prints, I am filled with a wish to convey to the people my thought in a deep, straight and pure way with clear brightness. This is why I can keep creating prints. I wish to make countless duplicates of the same visual field and spread them across the world.” -Yayoi Kusama

Visit the Exhibition

Yayoi Kusama: Cosmic Nature

Munroe, Alexandra, Groarke, Joanna L.,

Published by Rizzoli Electa (2020)

ISBN 10: 0847868397 ISBN 13: 9780847868391

Infinity Net: The Autobiography of Yayoi Kusama

Kusama, Yayoi

Published by University of Chicago Press (2012)

ISBN 10: 0226464989 ISBN 13: 9780226464985

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