Thursday, 4 October 2012

Curiosity Shop #5

Yayoi A-hoy!

If visiting imaginary lands is where you’re bound, then I’m sure Yayoi Kusama is on your radar. Kusama’s art takes you to places above and beyond your known experience. Her ability to transgress the everyday, find an alternative dimension and reside there, is awe inspiring.

Kusama creates art and exists as art simultaneousely. She lives it.  Reminiscent of Andy Warhol, her persona and life generate as much interest as the art itself. Her self-admission to a psychiatric hospital in 1977 has created much intrigue about the reality of her spot obsession. To what extent are her spotted visions real or imaginary? She is famously known to have said in interviews that she sees the world in dots yet there has always remained much doubt and speculation. 

 In her autobiography Infinity Net, published to coincide with the Tate exhibition this year, Kusama reveals that her art grew from hallucinations. In order to relieve her hallucinatory episodes she came to record them before they vanished: 'I was in a separate world, and I was drawing in order to document the sights I saw there... Recording them helped to ease the shock and fear of the episodes. That is the origin of my pictures.' She literally resides in a spotted world.

Yayoi Kusama, Accumulation No. 2, 1968

When walking through her exhibit at the Tate Modern in May this year it was as if she were present. You were in her room and she was under your skin. Immersed in spots you became a part of her art.

Yayoi Kusama, I'm here but nothing, 2000

I’d love to have her deck out my lounge in spots - all polka dotty! If you can’t afford a Kusama installation at home (imagine that!) her paintings actually come up at auction in Post-war & Contemporary sales at both Christie’s and Sotheby’s fairly regularly. Better still, she has just collaborated with Louis Vuitton so a little piece of Kusama could be yours for a fraction of the price of one of her art works. This incredible collection was launched at Selfridges and one of my favourite fashion bloggers Bip Ling collaborated on a cool video to mark the occasion. Bip, looking super cute like a little Kusama doll, replicates in movement the verses of a poem by Kusama, Love Forever.

The store has created a concept boutique full of a kooky ready-to-wear collection in her bold, primary colour palette and signature polka dot design.

Multiple spots and multiple Kusama's line the window at Selfridges. 

Spots have literally taken over Oxford St as all twenty four Selfridges windows are Kusama/ Vuitton displays. Inside the store the concept boutique is based on one of her pumpkin structures.  Life size wax models of Kusama herself accost you on your way around Selfridges and... surprise, surprise, dots are everywhere! Oxford St has gone dotty!

These shoes are incredible. A walking piece of art.

Maybe I'll see everyone in polka-dots when wearing these shades. I wanna get me these sunnies!

Kusama bangles?! Now this is too much! In a seriously too much too good way. An armful of these and I’d be in heaven. Jingle, jangle Kusama style.

Kusama’s galaxy of spots is endless. What a brilliant and intelligent partnership with Marc Jacobs. Jacobs has proven himself a visionary in this collaboration and it's exciting to imagine where he might take Louis Vuitton next. Kusama's energy and creativity are infinite. 'Stars, the earth, I and you. We are but one polka dot.'

Stars, the earth, I and you
We are but one polka dot
To a shining future
Budding love
All about my great happiness
Let's go and see our boyfriends in high heels
I'm in high heels
Love Forever

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