I’ve been a little MIA in the blog world lately, but I promise I’m back, and with something that I couldn’t help writing about: after two months of painful waiting and attempting to get tickets, I had the honor of experiencing Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Mirrors exhibit at the Hirshhorn Museum here in DC.
I’m not an art historian by any means, so get the background on Kusama and her art here, but I did want to share a few of my favorite photos and experience within the rooms.
I really and truly had no idea what to expect when I stepped into the first room, after a lot of waiting (the Hirshhorn has to release timed passes to accommodate over 100,000 guests that have attended the exhibit so far. I was lucky enough to get a pass online, but some people I met had been waiting since 6 AM to get tickets.)
You’re only allowed 20 seconds in each room, so finding the balance between taking photos and taking the room in was a challenge. I tried to devote the first five seconds or so really looking at the surroundings and the sensation of your body being replicated infinitely through the use of mirrors. I loved how fun and playful this room was.
The second room was the longest wait, and for good reason—stepping in, I felt like I was literally floating in space. The combination of lights literally makes you feel so small. Kusama meant for this room to be a space to examine one’s relationship to the universe, and it was impossible not to feel a sense of humility and awe for those few seconds.
I would fondly like to refer to this room as The Best Birthday Party I Never Had Room. Fun, playful, pink and black “balloons” dotted the room, as well as Kusama’s signature polka dot pattern. The entire room was actually encased in one of these balls which was really unique, as the other rooms were contained within white boxes.
This room was probably my favorite of the entire experience. Simple, flickering lanterns, paying homage to Japanese remembrance ceremonies, filled one with a sense of warmth and unity. (To be honest, I got STRONG Tangled vibes—lantern festival, anyone?)
This was the only room in the exhibit where you weren’t allowed to take photos inside (I snuck this one as we were walking in). These pumpkins were each made from molded soft plastic and hand painted in Tokyo. I loved the contrast between the golden yellow and black!
The final room, known as the Obliteration Room, was such a perfect ending to the exhibit. The entire room is outfitted with furniture (from a piano to a computer desk to an IKEA-outfitted living space). The room was entirely white to begin with, but each guest is given polka dot stickers to leave somewhere in the room. As you can tell, this resulted in quite the rainbow explosion!
I loved getting to contribute in some small way to this exhibit and to learn how Kusama was able to transform some of her pains and struggles into such moving pieces. It definitely left me feeling inspired, and I am so honored and lucky that I was able to see the exhibit during my time here in DC!
Back at you tomorrow with a delicious recipe. Promise.