Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama is among the most celebrated living artists. With a career spanning more than sixty years, Kusama is recognized for her immersive installations that examine concepts of infinity and obliteration. Her Obliteration Room encourages visitors to “obliterate” a domestic interior by putting brightly colored stickers onto the walls, furniture, and floors.
Commissioned for the National Gallery of Victoria Triennial, the installation recreates a furnished domestic space. Visitors are asked to put on red flower motifs various surfaces. Over the duration of the exhibition, the spreading of flower blossoms will little by little cover all surfaces, ‘obliterating’ and changing the room into a breathtaking environment.
“One day, after gazing at a pattern of red flowers on the tablecloth, I looked up to see that the ceiling, the windows, and the columns seemed to be plastered with the same red floral pattern,” Kusama explains in a press release for the triennial. “I saw the entire room, my entire body, and the entire universe covered with red flowers, and in that instant my soul was obliterated … This was not an illusion but reality itself.”
Featuring the work of over 100 artists and designers from 32 countries, the NGV Triennial surveys the world of art and design, across cultures, scales, geographies and perspectives. For more on Yayoi Kusama, we have an in depth biography right here.
All images by Eugene Hyland