” I am just another dot in the world”
Yayoi Kusama was born in Matsumoto, Nagano on March 22, 1929. Kusama was the fourth child born to the conservative family. The family were prosperous in business and Yayoi was often discouraged in her pursuit of art as a child particularly by her mother who allegedly beat her, Yayoi has been plagued since early childhood by hallucinations and suicidal thoughts, luckily for her an obsessive nature also helped her to keep true to her artistic path in life, a path that was not easy, but windswept and interesting. In 1948, she left home to enter senior class at Kyoto Municipal School of Arts and Crafts. America was calling and in 1957 Yayoi settled in Seattle and had her first show an exhibition of paintings at the Zoe Dusanne Gallery. A year later, after talking with Georgie O’Keefe Kusama moved to an apartment in New York, sharing a building with Donald Judd and Eva Hesse who became a good friend. Kusama quickly became a leader in the avant-garde movement”. Kusama was hospitalized more than once during this time due to the immense pressure of her self imposed workload. Something that Kusama resolved on her return to Japan in 1973, after checking into a mental institution and becoming a permanent resident but by day continuing her prolific workload at her studio across the road. “If it were not for art, I would have killed myself a long time ago.” A polka-dot has the form of the sun, which is a symbol of the energy of the whole world and our living life, and also the form of the moon, which is calm. Round, soft, colorful, senseless and unknowing. Polka-dots become movement … Polka dots are a way to infinity. It’s often hard to distinguish where the art and the person behind the art, starts and finishes, as the lady is as bold and as graphic as the art itself.
a young kusama
yellow and black portrait
Kusama at work