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Mona Maine de Biran

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I’m a fan of Manhattan Art, Beauty, Fashion and Lifestyle! The best way to experience New York City that I've found is by word of mouth. Great ideas and inspiration often come from other people's thoughts and experiences.

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New York's Yayoi Kusama ReDux?

New York's Yayoi Kusama ReDux?

There are so many exceptional exhibits to attend in Manhattan. One can hardly find the time, sometimes. And so I look for things which are, in my view, most exceptionally exceptional! Personally, leaning towards things which might move me as an experience vs. just merely reputable work. It's a high bar.  

You may already have experienced Yayoi Kusama's work in the past. But, if you haven't, then here is a fresh chance! I highly recommend you do and hope this summary inspires you to attend. 

As happens on rare occasion, I read an article to which I can add little more than light commentary and, in support, a "Here, here!". I like to simply pass along those words and author's works. Please find below excerpts from an article from the November 3rd New York Times Art section, written by Roberta Smith: 

"Sometimes I think Yayoi Kusama might be the greatest artist to come out of the 1960s and one of the few, thanks in part to her long life, still making work that feels of the moment. Other times I think she’s a bit of a charlatan who produces more Kusama paintings than the world needs and stoops to conquer with mirrored “Infinity” rooms that attract hordes of selfie-seekers oblivious to her efforts on canvas. (Funny, yet sad, but so true.)

Ms. Kusama’s current three-ring circus of exhibitions at David Zwirner’s uptown and downtown spaces — which include 76 works on canvas — argue in favor of greatness. (my emphasis added)

"While there are the inevitable “Infinity” rooms on view in Chelsea, the shows give her paintings a new forcefulness; with their fluctuating rhythms and imaginative images, they could even win over fans who only have eyes for her Instagrammable environments." (chuckle, chuckle.)

"Now 88, Ms. Kusama works nonstop and, if you’re wondering, does all the painting herself, save for a ground color applied by assistants. Recently she shifted her workweek from five days to six, saving Sunday for writing, reading, talking on the phone and making smaller paintings." You go, girl! That kind of work ethic is laudable at any age. 

"She and her art run the gamut from avant-garde to popular to outsider to whiz-bang conjuring. The pixieish creature we see in a bright orange wig wearing clothes printed with patterns from her art is only her most recent public persona. She plays cute grandma to Jeff Koons’s cheerful robot, to cite another widely known artist’s self-presentation." Very clever, as her own  brand ambassador.

As the author writes, "It is the vitality of an artist who lives to work, whose work keeps her alive." The intensity of her vision and work makes that clear. So, "Here, here!" May we all have such passion and purpose.

The new Zwirner galleries present some of Kusama's most recent work, a display of 10 paintings from this year. Timeless as the work is, this update to Yahoi Kasuma's installations is worthy of a visit (or re-visit). You can see her Infinity Nets through December 16th at David Zwirner, 34 East 69th Street and her Festival of Life exhibit also through December 16th but at David Zwirner's 533 West 19th Street location. Enjoy! 

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Author: Mona Maine de Biran

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