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The Obliteration Room

Yayoi Kusama is a famous Japanese artist and writer known for her works in various fields like paintings, environmental installations, collage, pop art and sculptures. Her work has been an inspiration for numerous contemporary artists. An exhibition of her works was held in New York during which The Obliteration Room , an installation commissioned by Queensland Art Gallery’s ‘APT 2002: Asia Pacific Triennal of Contemporary Art’ was displayed.

Courtesy of Yayoi Kusama

Courtesy of Yayoi Kusama

A traditional, prefabricated American suburban house was used as a setting for the installation. The house contained typical household furniture and local ornamentation all painted in white color along with the walls, roof and floor. This white color acted as a canvas which could be ‘obliterated’ and displayed most vividly.

Courtesy of Yayoi Kusama

Courtesy of Yayoi Kusama

According to Yayoi, “a polka-dot has the form of the sun, which is a symbol of the energy of the whole world and our living life, and also the form of the moon, which is calm. Round, soft, colorful, senseless and unknowing. Polka-dots become movement … Polka dots are a way to infinity.”

Courtesy of Yayoi Kusama

Courtesy of Yayoi Kusama

The visitors to the installations were provided with bright colored stickers and then were told to paste it wherever they wished. This ‘obliteration’ on the otherwise untainted house gradually transforms the space into something totally unique and recorded using time-lapsed photography. The installation acted as an exploration of relationship between form, matter and space while displaying her dedication and passion towards accomplishing her vision through her work in the last six decades.

By : Vaibhav Sharma

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