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Yayoi Kusama's Art


Yayoi Kusama’s life is both a moving testimonial to the therapeutic power of art and an examination of human perseverance. Today, Kusama is regarded as one of the most distinctive and well-known modern female artists.


Kusama started having intense hallucinations when she was around 10 years of age, in which plants would communicate with her, and fabric designs would spring to life and swallow her.

early training

Kusama studied painting in Kyoto and Masumoto, defying her mother, who wished that she become a dutiful housewife. Because there was a tendency in Japan during that time to reject Western cultural influences, Kusama was required to learn Nihonga.

mature period

With the assistance of Georgia O’Keeffe, with whom Kusama had begun a friendship while still residing in Japan, she was able to obtain exhibits and sales, resulting in early interest in Yayoi Kusama’s paintings.

late period

After Kusama returned to Japan, the Western art world had almost forgotten about her. Even in Japan, she was largely renowned for her violent novels. That changed when she was selected to be the Japanese representative at the 45th Venice Biennale in 1993.


Kusama’s wide-ranging influence may be due to the fact that she has always been one step ahead of her time, with her art at the vanguard of major aesthetic movements.


When Kusama was a youngster and started to have hallucinations, she coped by painting what she saw. She states that art became a method for her to convey her mental illness, as seen by her Infinity Net canvases.


Some of Kusama's most notable works include The Woman (1953), Accumulation No.1 (1962), Narcissus Garden (1966), and Anatomic Explosion on Wall Street (1968).