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Yayoi Kusama (Contemporary Artists) Paperback – 1 Jan 2000

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Product details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Phaidon Press; 1 edition (1 Jan. 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0714839205
  • ISBN-13: 978-0714839202
  • Product Dimensions: 25.4 x 1.9 x 29.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 111,849 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Amazon Review

Maverick septuagenarian artist Yayoi Kusama has spent the last 20 years in a mental hospital in Tokyo, where she has immersed herself in art therapy to help her with her obsessive neurosis. Feeling ostracised by Japan, she went to America in 1958, where for the next 15 years she developed her distinctive imagery of dots, dried macaroni and protuberances, the latter of which, the antithesis of the dots, are phalluses or tumorous root vegetables depending on your delectation. The dots of the so-called "Affinity Nets", rash-like in their spread and obvious itch for her, are the result of a childhood hallucination and their continual repetition serves as a means of self-annihilation, be it on huge canvases, everyday objects or people. In America she also organised frequent Happenings in public places, usually involving nudity and, yes, dots. Since her re-discovery by the world in 1993 when she represented Japan at the Venice Biennale, she has had a wildly successful retrospective back in America and a London exhibition for which Phaidon have produced this excellent explanatory monograph, replete with interviews (including one with British enfant terrible Damien Hirst), an enthusiastic essay, excerpts from her own writing, accompanied by photographs of her installations and nostalgic stills of the Happenings.

Like Louise Bourgeois, another &eacaute;migr&eacaute; to America, Kusama draws on a psychic disturbance attributable to an abusive childhood to inform her art, using her new location as a blank canvas for an unashamedly rampant egotism. For someone so scornful of association with art movements such as Pop Art or Surrealism, her works evolved alongside them with remarkable ease and her dynamic self-publicising activities link her with Andy Warhol and Joseph Beuys, to name but two. From the prolific whorls and mass reproduction of this proverbial leopard comes an exultant heady release that has developed through changes in medium that only the rigid continuity of substance can allow. In the absence of the physical works themselves, this enlightening volume evokes a reminder of Kusama's singular and survivalist vision, as frightening as it is playful and sensual. --David Vincent


"This book is a fine collection of her influential and beautifully turbulent work."―Creative Review

"A handome monograph."―Modern Painters

On the Contemporary Artists Series

"The boldest, best executed, and most far-reaching publishing project devoted to contemporary art. These books will revolutionize the way contemporary art is presented and written about."―Artforum

"The combination of intelligent analysis, personal insight, useful facts and plentiful pictures is a superb format invaluable for specialists but also interesting for casual readers, it makes these books a must for the library of anyone who cares about contemporary art."―Time Out

"A unique series of informative monographs on individual artists."―The Sunday Times

"Gives the reader the impression of a personal encounter with the artists. Apart from the writing which is lucid and illuminating, it is undoubtedly the wealth of lavish illustrations which makes looking at these books a satisfying entertainment."―The Art Book

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Most helpful customer reviews on 4.4 out of 5 stars 5 reviews
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5.0 out of 5 starsExcellent art book
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4.0 out of 5 starsGreat Book!
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5.0 out of 5 starsBeautiful
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4.0 out of 5 starsKusama, A Magnificent Obsession
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5.0 out of 5 starsKusama takes the Kake
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