Japan's polka dot queen, Yayoi Kusama, opens exhibition in Shanghai
By Hong Yaobin

A grand exhibition of Yayoi Kusama, one of the most iconic Japanese contemporary artists worldwide, has opened at the Fosun Foundation in Shanghai, attracting huge crowds to admire the creativity of the "polka dot queen."

Titled "All about Love Speaks Forever," the exhibition is "tailor-made" specifically for the Fosun Foundation Shanghai, according to Duanmu Xiazi, artistic director of the institution.

More than 40 pieces of the 90-year-old artist's works went on display on Wednesday, including some of her most renowned creations: "Infinity Mirrored Room," "Pumpkins" and "My Eternal Soul" series.

Yayoi Kusama reads a poem in a video featured at the "All about Love Speaks Forever" exhibition in Shanghai, China, March 7, 2019. /Gif via Sohu

Yayoi Kusama reads a poem in a video featured at the "All about Love Speaks Forever" exhibition in Shanghai, China, March 7, 2019. /Gif via Sohu

A number of large-scale immersive and reflective installations are also on display.

In front of the museum is a three-meter-tall outdoor pumpkin sculpture, which is universally regarded as a creative mark of the exhibition.

Exterior view of the building of the "All about Love Speaks Forever" exhibition in the Fosun Foundation in Shanghai, China, March 7, 2019. /Gif via Sohu

Exterior view of the building of the "All about Love Speaks Forever" exhibition in the Fosun Foundation in Shanghai, China, March 7, 2019. /Gif via Sohu

A three-dimensional polka-dot installation that covers a 100-square-meter space and some celebrated space full of convex mirrors in order are among numerous highlights.

To ensure that the setting of exhibits perfectly fits the architecture, staff from the artist's studio often visited the landmark building in the heart of Shanghai.

In her statement, Kusama said, "In this exhibition, I will mainly be presenting my new works, as well as works that resonate with the architecture."

A three-dimensional polka-dot installation is seen at the "All about Love Speaks Forever" exhibition in Shanghai, China, March 7, 2019. /Gif via Sohu

A three-dimensional polka-dot installation is seen at the "All about Love Speaks Forever" exhibition in Shanghai, China, March 7, 2019. /Gif via Sohu

On the third floor of the exhibition hall is one of her most celebrated painting series of "My Eternal Soul," which include two new works of that she created in 2018.

Born in 1929 in the central Japanese city of Matsumoto, Kusama is a world famous artist known for her use of vibrant colors and polka-dot patterns. She claimed before that she started hallucinating when she was 10 and among the visions she had flowers spoke to her. 

Yayoi Kusama's paintings are showcased at the "All about Love Speaks Forever" exhibition in Shanghai, China, March 7, 2019. /Gif via Sohu

Yayoi Kusama's paintings are showcased at the "All about Love Speaks Forever" exhibition in Shanghai, China, March 7, 2019. /Gif via Sohu

Instead of allowing the experience to debilitate her, Kusama turned the illness into a source of creative energy, drawing dense arrays of polka dots across large monochrome canvases. 

Affiliated with minimalism, pop culture and Zero movement, Kusama has developed a unique and imaginative artistic style, applying it to a wide range of media, from paintings to installations, performance art, and literature.

"Infinity Mirrored Room" is one of the most popular installations at the "All about Love Speaks Forever" exhibition in Shanghai, China, March 7, 2019. /Gif via Sohu

"Infinity Mirrored Room" is one of the most popular installations at the "All about Love Speaks Forever" exhibition in Shanghai, China, March 7, 2019. /Gif via Sohu

Wang Jinyuan, chairwoman of Fosun Foundation, described Kusama's iconic visual images such as the polka dots and mirrors as remarkable creations that are "simple and powerful – suitable for all ages."

"The root cause is fear, but what she expresses is great love," said Wang. "What people perceive in the art of Yayoi Kusama is the mystery of the vastness of the universe and the breadth of the human spirit."

The exhibition will run through June 9. 

(With inputs from China Daily.)

(Cover: View of the "Infinity Mirrored Room" at Yayoi Kusama's "All about Love Speaks Forever" exhibition in Shanghai, China, March 7, 2019. /VCG Photo)