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  • Talma Gotteiner

Tel Aviv Museum of Art: The First Retrospective of Japanese Artist Yayoi Kusama in Israel

Hi there,

Ranked one of the ten biggest and best art exhibitions opening in 2021 around the world, an extensive retrospective of Kusama’s work will arrive at Tel Aviv Museum of Art in November.

The exhibition will be presented at TAMA thanks to a collaboration with Studio Kusama in Tokyo and the Gropius Bau in Berlin, one of Europe’s most important exhibitions venues, where it opens this week. Another extensive exhibition of the artist’s work has opened recently in New York’s botanical garden.

Tel Aviv Museum of Art will present the first-ever retrospective in Israel of renowned Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama (b. 1929), one of the most important contemporary living artists.

WHEN: November 2021

Tel Aviv Museum of Art: The First Retrospective of Japanese Artist Yayoi Kusama in Israel
Credit: Yayoi Kusama, Infinity Mirrored Room — Love Forever, 1966/94, Holz, Spiegel, Metall, Glühbirnen, Wood, mirrors, metal, lightbulbs, 210,2 x 240,2 x 205,2 cm © YAYOI KUSAMA, Courtesy: Ota Fine Arts

The monumental exhibition will offer an overview of Kusama’s main creative periods over the past 70 years, with some 200 works and four Infinity Rooms (unique mirror installations) – including several new works realized for the first time. Spanning almost 3,000 m² across the Museum’s two buildings, in six galleries, the scale of the exhibition is unparalleled.

Yayoi Kusama is among the world’s most popular artists, and can be considered a global brand” herself. Even in her nineties, her looks are unforgettable: red wigs, witch’s hats, sorcerer’s robes,and polka-dot clothing have become synonymous with the Japanese artist. Kusama is the most-tagged artist in social media and her work is uniquely suited for our Instagram and selfie age. Hundreds of thousands of people photograph themselves in her unique installations and share the results under hashtags like #YayoiKusama or #InfiniteKusama. Celebrities like Katy Perry or Adele even preformed inside her artworks.

Kusama is well known for her commercial collaborations with luxury brands. Her partnership with Louis Vuitton in 2012 dramatically increased awareness of her work and her personal narrative.

Kusama’s works are exhibited around the world in leading museums, galleries and public spaces, enjoying wide press coverage. A major retrospective of her work traveled in 2011 and 2012 to the Whitney Museum in New York, the Tate Modern in London, the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, and the Reina Sofia Museum in Madrid. In addition, she has had large-scale solo exhibitions in Mexico, Brazil, South Korea, Taiwan and Chile, among others. In the past seven years, more than five-million museum visitors have queued for a brief glimpse of (and selfie with) the work of Yayoi Kusama.

The exhibition in Israel is curated by Dr. Stephanie Rosenthal, Director of Gropius Bau, and Suzanne Landau, former Director and Chief Curator of TAMA.

Tania Coen-Uzzielli, Director of the Tel Aviv Museum of Art: “We are proud to host this extensive retrospective of Yayoi Kusama’s work. Particularly now, in the post Covid-19 period with all its difficulties, the public thirsts for exciting quality experiences. The presentation of this monumental exhibition in Israel, in collaboration with other museums around the world, will allow the Israeli public to enjoy a unique international cultural event. The first-ever retrospective in Israel of this renowned Japanese artist will continue to establish Tel Aviv Museum of Art’s standing as one of the foremost art venues in the world.”

Suzanne Landau, curator of the exhibition: “The art of 92-year-old Yayoi Kusama, which thrills millions of people around the world, encompasses drawing, painting, sculpture, installation, performance, cinema, and fashion. Her entire oeuvre is mesmerizingly powerful, impressive and pleasurable at the same time. The presentation of her retrospective at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art is definitely a unique event of historic magnitude.”



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