YAYOI KUSAMA: RECENT PAINTINGS: Yayoi Kusama
Ota Fine Arts Singapore is delighted to present “YAYOI KUSAMA: RECENT PAINTINGS”, a solo exhibition featuring 15 monochrome paintings from the artist’s My Eternal Soul series made in 2019-2020, and CLOUDS (2019), a sculpture installation consisting pieces of mirror-finished stainless-steel forms. This will be Kusama’s first solo presentation in Singapore since her last large retrospective at the National Gallery Singapore in 2017. All works in this exhibition will be shown for the first time in Southeast Asia.
In 2018, Kusama started working intensively on a series of 100 x 100 cm paintings. Subsequently in 2019, she began making these paintings in monochrome. Unlike other paintings of the same series which are usually covered in bright, vibrant colours, these works feature bold black lines that envelop the canvas together with her wealth of varied motifs: eyes, faces, biomorphic shapes, nets and dots.
These recent paintings synthesize contrasting concepts and forms of positive and negative spaces, figuration and abstraction, microscopic and macroscopic views of the universe. Non-uniformed brushstrokes have left some parts of the canvas untouched by black paint and the resulting white spaces create a shifting movement and flow. Unknowingly, viewers are swept up in a dynamic and voluminous energy. With titles such as ALL OF MY LOVE FOR HUMANITY (2019) and LOOKING INTO THE UNIVERSE FROM MY HEART (2019), these paintings provide a glimpse into Kusama’s current state of mind. Her works are infused with reflections on love, death, humanity and her relationship with the universe and beyond.
As Kusama delved into the aesthetic potential of the monochrome, her restraint use of a limited palette brings to focus the form that she depicts and the strength of the motifs that has continuously appeared in her work over the past decade. Created at the tenth year mark of her My Eternal Soul series, they force a review on the way we look at and approach this series.
In CLOUDS (2019), stainless steel cloud-like shapes surround the floors of the gallery. They echo, reflect, and complement the lines in Kusama’s paintings, creating at once an expansive yet immersive atmosphere that allows for imagination beyond the walls of the gallery. Here, Kusama’s interest in reflection, repetition and accumulation is exemplified.
As Yayoi Kusama continues to expand her creative vocabulary, this exhibition in Ota Fine Arts Singapore is exemplary of her continuous innovation, uncompromising vision and compelling charm that captivates people all around the world.