The Moment - Feb 22, 2020

Yayoi Kusama's Largest Immersive 'Infinity Mirror Room' Is Set to Draw Crowds at ICA Boston

  • BOSTON, Massachusetts
  • /
  • September 17, 2019

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The art installation ‘Love is Calling’ by Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama.
ICA

The Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston (ICA) opens Yayoi Kusama’s LOVE IS CALLING (2013) to the public on September 24, and tickets are already sold out through October 31. The next ticket release will be October 15 for the general public.

Acquired last fall by the ICA, LOVE IS CALLING is the largest and among the most immersive of the artist’s existing Infinity Mirror Rooms. A focused presentation drawn from the ICA’s collection titled Beyond Infinity: Contemporary Art after Kusama accompanies the Infinity Mirror Room, offering audiences insight into Kusama’s influences and her important legacy on contemporary art.

“We are thrilled to share Yayoi Kusama’s groundbreaking work, beloved by audiences around the globe. LOVE IS CALLING offers visitors the opportunity to experience the artist’s notion of the infinite, as well as her public performances that connect personal and political ideas about peace and connectivity,” said Jill Medvedow, the ICA’s Ellen Matilda Poss Director.

“Yayoi Kusama has indelibly shaped some of the most important art movements of the twentieth century, including Minimalism, Pop art, and feminist and performance art. LOVE IS CALLING encompasses many aspects of Kusama’s unique visual language, including mirrored architectural space, brilliant color, signature polka dots, and the illusion of infinity,” said Eva Respini, the ICA’s Barbara Lee Chief Curator. “Beyond Infinity, the 14th annual presentation of the ICA collection, considers how Kusama’s prescient artistic practice, including her feminist voice and experiments with form and environment, has shaped contemporary art in unique ways.”

LOVE IS CALLING

Yayoi Kusama
Sep 24, 2019—Feb 7, 2021
Yayoi Kusama (b. 1929, Matsumoto, Japan) is one of today’s most recognized and celebrated artists. In addition to her widely popular Infinity Mirror Rooms, Kusama creates vibrant paintings, works on paper, and sculpture with abstract imagery. LOVE IS CALLING features vividly colored, tentacle-like, inflatable sculptures covered with the artist’s signature polka dots and encased in a dark mirrored room to create an illusion of infinite space. As visitors walk throughout the installation, a sound recording of Kusama reciting a love poem in Japanese plays continuously. Written by the artist, the poem’s title translates to Residing in a Castle of Shed Tears in English. Exploring enduring themes including life and death, the poem poignantly expresses Kusama’s hope to spread a universal message of love through her art. The largest of Kusama’s existing Infinity Mirror RoomsLOVE IS CALLING is the first one held in the permanent collection of a New England museum. In 1966, the ICA exhibited an Infinity Mirror Room, now titled Endless Love Show, in the exhibition Multiplicity; the museum also owns a 1953 drawing by the artist. LOVE IS CALLING is organized by Eva Respini, Barbara Lee Chief Curator.

Beyond Infinity: Contemporary Art after Kusama

Sep 24, 2019—Feb 7, 2021
Beyond Infinity: Contemporary Art after Kusama features approximately 15 works from the 1950s to today, encompassing sculpture, painting, film, photography, and drawings. Primarily drawn from the ICA collection with select loans, the exhibition will focus on Kusama’s legacy in three key areas—repetition, the self, and the kaleidoscopic. Beyond Infinity will provide visitors with a deeper understanding of how the immersive environment of LOVE IS CALLING embodies the artist’s longstanding exploration of accumulation, repetition, luminescence, life and death, and happenings. Works featuring Kusama’s obsessive repetition of symbols, patterns, and forms will be paired with works by contemporaries such as Louise Bourgeois, Eva Hesse, and Ana Mendieta, as well as current practitioners such as Nick Cave, Tara Donovan, Jimmy DeSana, Josh Faught, Ellen Gallagher, and Josiah McElheny, whose work reflects the legacy of post-minimalism, performance art, and Pop art. Beyond Infinity: Contemporary Art after Kusama is organized by Ellen Tani, Assistant Curator.
 


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