Yayoi Kusama (b. 1929)
This Lot has been sourced from overseas. When au… Read more
Yayoi Kusama (b. 1929)

Pumpkin

Details
Yayoi Kusama (b. 1929)
Pumpkin
signed 'YAYOI KUSAMA' in English; dated '1994';
titled in Japanese (on the reverse)
acrylic on canvas
14 x 17.8 cm. (5 1/2 x 7 in.)
Painted in 1994
Special notice

This Lot has been sourced from overseas. When auctioned, such property will remain under “bond” with the applicable import customs duties and taxes being deferred unless and until the property is brought into free circulation in the PRC. Prospective buyers are reminded that after paying for such lots in full and cleared funds, if they wish to import the lots into the PRC, they will be responsible for and will have to pay the applicable import customs duties and taxes. The rates of import customs duty and tax are based on the value of the goods and the relevant customs regulations and classifications in force at the time of import.

Lot Essay

Yayoi Kusama is arguably one of the most creative and productive avant-garde artists today.In her sixty years of storied artistic career, she has made her presence in fields as variegated as performance arts, films, paintings, pencil drawing, sculptures, installations, fashion, poetry, novels and so on. Yayoi Kusama, a pivotal figure in the global art scene, has deeply influenced generations of contemporary artists around the globe.
This auction presents Yayoi Kusama's plant-themed works, where the viewer conducts a dialogue with the plant through the artist, as the artist explores her feelings for nature and insights into the universe. This series implies more than just Kusama's artistic creation: painting and sculpture are married, fusing unique inventive elements through her visual impaired eyes. The polka dots symbolize particles constituting the world, while the netted lines are reminiscent of the vast expansive universe holding everything in.
These two Pumpkin (Lot 1 & Lot 2) art works were the brainchild of Kusama in the early nineties, as her delicate brush strokes perfectly combined her representative Infinity Net series with her favourite pumpkin. Yayoi Kusama chooses pumpkin, a plump and firm vegetable, and exploits the sharp contrast of the background hue with the colours of the pumpkin: yellow and black, red and white, as the visual dynamic dances sprightly and happily. This may be Yayoi Kusama's attempt in recreating the excitement she experienced in her grandfather's field when she was a child, akin to the exhilaration of the first encounter with her future major themed art: pumpkin.

The densely packed yet adaptable polka dots vary in different works from Kusama's Pumpkin series. Housed in a net-like infinite universe, it reproduces the visual illusions seen perhaps only through her eyes. The pumpkin is her iconic language that invites the viewer on a journey down her unique and unfathomable inner world for a surreal and dynamic visual adventure.
Artist BiographyYayoi Kusama


Born in 1929 at Matsumoto-shi, Nagano, Japan, Kusama studied at Art Student League in 1957. Her self-produced and starred film Kusama's Self Obliteration won the 4th International Festival Film Competition in Belgium. Other awards include: her novel The Hustlers Grotto of Christopher Street won the Tenth Literary Award for New Writers from the monthly magazine Yasei Jidai (1983); Best Gallery Show (1995-6); The Education Minister's Art Encouragement Prize (2000); Foreign Minister's Commendations (2000); Asahi Prize (2001); Nagano Governor Prize (2003); National Lifetime Achievement Awards, the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette and The Premium Imperial- Painting (2006). Solo exhibitions include: Yayoi Kusama, Matsumoto City Museum of Art, Nagano, Japan (2008); Yayoi Kusama, Dots Obsession, Love Transformed into Dots, Haus der Kunst, Munich, Germany (2007); Yayoi Kusama Solo Exhibition YAYOI in FOREVER, Forever Museum of Contemporary Art, Akita, Japan (2006); Yayoi Kusama: Eternity-Modernity, The National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto, Japan (2005); KUSAMATRIX, Mori Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan (2004); Yayoi Kusama Mixed Media, MOMA Contemporary, Fukuoka, Japan (2002); Kusama Retrospective, Los Angeles County Museum of Art Museum of Modern Art, New York Walker Art Center, Minneapolis Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, Japan (1998-1999). Group exhibitions include: JAPAN! CULTURE + HYPER CULTURE, The Kennedy Center, Washington, D.C., USA (2008); Beautiful New World: Contemporary Visual Culture from Japan, Long March Project, 798 Dashanzi Art District, Beijing, China (2007); Tokyo-Berlin/Berlin-Tokyo, Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin, Germany (2006); Summer of Love, Art of the Psychedelic Era, Tate Liverpool, Liverpool, UK (2005); The 2004 Whitney Biennial, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, USA (2004); Obsession, Galica Arte Contemporanea, Milano, Milan, Italy (2003); The Unfinished Century: Legacies of 20th Century Art, The National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo, Japan (2002); Parkett Artists' Editions, The Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA (2001). Kusama contributes to activities such as photographic collaborations with Nobuyoshi Araki, fashion collaborations with Issey Miyake, music collaborations with Peter Gabriel. She also appeared in the film Topaz by Ryu Murakami.

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