Kusama arrived in New York in 1958, and her reputation grew during the 1960s through art, fashion, and happenings. She returned to Japan in the 1970s and checked herself into the Seiwa Hospital for the Mentally Ill, where she has resided by choice ever since, working from a studio close by. Kusama has said, “If it were not for art, I would have killed myself a long time ago.”
Her well-known series of installations, “Dots Obsession”, relates to the hallucinations Kusama suffered as a child. She describes her use of dots as self-obliteration and says that when dots are painted on bodies during happenings, they symbolically neutralize the ego.
The recipient of numerous awards, Kusama has exhibited around the world and has works in the permanent collections of leading museums such as New York’s Museum of Modern Art, Tate Modern in London, the Pompidou Center in Paris, and the National Museum of Modern Art in Tokyo.
Kusama’s installation “Gleaming Lights of the Souls” has delighted visitors to Denmark’s Louisiana Museum of Modern Art since 2008. And beginning in September, the Museum will host a five-month exhibition dedicated to the full spectrum of her work.
Louisiana Museum of Modern Art
September 17–January 24, 2016
Gl. Strandvej 13, Humlebæk, Denmark