At Large /SHARE
The Circle Married The Line
For centuries humans have pondered over infinity. Cosmologists have asked 'are the stars never ending?', mathematicians create symbols to represent eternity and in everything we do - art, words, music, architecture - is it a means to cement our names immortal?
Japanese artist (and recent Louis Vuitton collaborator) Yayoi Kusama painted her forever in a circle. She called it boredom but now we know it was the avant-garde before Yoko Ono, the forerunner before Andy and his factory and a beginning for the pop-art fraction in NYC. For her it was always the polka dots. On canvas, trees, chairs, walls, pavements - even naked limbs - and now on Louis Vuitton garb.
The Zen Buddhists would paint circles to symbolise creative freedom to the mind - Kusama's rationale is similar yet searching further up into the abyss: "… 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, colourful, senseless and unknowing…" She once said of her repetition, "… Polka dots become movement ... Polka dots are a way to infinity."
50 years on the spot is still spinning.
Yayoi Kusama in retrospect will be hosted at the Whitney Museum of American Art until 30 September.