Highlights: 'Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors' At High Museum

Here's an exhibit at the High Museum that will leave you smiling.
  • Twirl around and see what infinity looks like.
    Twirl around and see what infinity looks like.
  • How can you not feel happy surrounded by all these polka dots?
    How can you not feel happy surrounded by all these polka dots?
  • Would you believe that this room once was solid white?
    Would you believe that this room once was solid white?
  • Aww. It's the famous Kusama pumpkins.
    Aww. It's the famous Kusama pumpkins.
  • Here's the artist surrounding by some of her paintings.
    Here's the artist surrounding by some of her paintings.

Atlanta’s High Museum of Art is the last stop on the North American tour of the blockbuster exhibit, “Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors.” Of course, the show is sold out, but the High is making available daily -- to walk-ups on a first-come, first-served basis -- 100 tickets. Therefore, if you missed your opportunity to get tickets, there remains a chance.

Here are a few highlights of the show that has found its way into the imagination of the nation – and now Atlanta. The show runs through Feb. 17, 2019.

The Mirror Rooms – There are six of them. Visitors enter, two or three people at a time, and get about 20 seconds, depending on the room, to look into what is probably the best visual of infinity that any of us ever will see. As you stand there and turn around, you’ll see all the lights and/or objects repeated over and over – and you’ll see yourself again and again. It’s pretty cool, and those few seconds, believe it or not, are plenty of time. You may snap a photo in the rooms so long as you don’t use a flash.

The Polka Dot Balls – In addition to a domed mirror room in this section, there are huge inflated polka dot balls everywhere. Betcha can't help smiling.

The Obliteration Room – Once a solid white room, complete with a sofa, lamps, bookcases and more, visitors throughout the exhibit are obliterating the whiteness by sticking colored dots everywhere. The day I was there, it appeared that an NBA team had come through because a few of the dots were WAY over my reach. Perhaps the Atlanta Hawks toured the exhibit.

The Pumpkins – It’s here, the “All the Eternal Love I Have for the Pumpkins,” infinity room. It’s a toss up between this and the polka dot balls as to which is the happier room.

Paintings – For as much as I loved the infinity mirrors, I think my favorite section is the first one, where you enter the exhibit. It features a huge wall covered in bright paintings that took me straight to my happy place.

A 9-year-old who saw the exhibit said his favorite part was "The coolness of standing in a void." His younger sister loved the pink polka dot hanging balls. Their mom said that both kids were really creative with their sticker-sticking in the Obliteration Room. And she added that waiting in line with children for each of the rooms wasn't terrible and was well worth the wait 

While you are at the High, take time to visit -- or revist -- the galleries, which recently underwent a reinstallation. Read all about it here.  

On Jan. 12, the High plans a full day of Yayoi Kusama-inspired programs with the award-winning illustrator of “Yayoi Kusama, From Here to Infinity," Ellen Weinstein.

The High Museum is located on Peachtree Street, right in the heart of Midtown, Atlanta’s heart of the arts. Stop for a bite before or after the exhibit at one of these Midtown restaurants.

You may walk just across the street from the High to visit the Museum of Design Atlanta (MODA) or travel a few blocks to enjoy the Worlds of Puppetry Museum at Center for Puppetry Arts. Just across the street from the Puppetry Museum is The Breman, Atlanta’s Jewish museum. 

Journalist Carol Carter writes and edits for Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau. 


All images shown her are courtesy of the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C. Below are the official captions for the images, in order of their appearance here:

Yayoi Kusama (Japanese, born 1929), Aftermath of Obliteration of Eternity, 2009, wood, mirrors, plastic, acrylic, LEDs, glass,and aluminum. Collection of the artist. Courtesy of Ota Fine Arts, Tokyo/Singapore; Victoria Miro, London; David Zwirner, New York. © Yayoi Kusama. Photo by Cathy Carver.

Yayoi Kusama (Japanese, born 1929), Dots Obsession—Love Transformed into Dots, 2007, vinyl, LEDs, mirrors, and decals. Courtesy of Ota Fine Arts, Tokyo/Singapore; Victoria Miro, London; David Zwirner, New York. Courtesy Victoria Miro Gallery, London. © Yayoi Kusama. Photo by Cathy Carver.

Yayoi Kusama (Japanese, born 1929), The Obliteration Room, 2002–present, furniture, paint and dot stickers. Collaboration between Yayoi Kusama and Queensland Art Gallery. Commissioned Queensland Art Gallery, Australia. Gift of the artist through the Queensland Art Gallery Foundation2012. Collection: Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane, Australia.© Yayoi Kusama. Photo by QAGOMA Photography.

Yayoi Kusama (Japanese, born 1929), All the Eternal Love I Have for the Pumpkins, 2016, at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, wood, mirrors, plastic, glass, and LEDs. Collection of the artist. Courtesy of Ota Fine Arts, Tokyo/Singapore and Victoria Miro, London. © Yayoi Kusama. Photo by Cathy Carver.

Yayoi Kusama with recent works in Tokyo, 2016. Courtesy of the artist. Art © Yayoi Kusama. Photo by Tomoaki Makino.

 

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