Lot Details

"I like the essential repetitive form of pumpkins…They're like everything else I do but at the same time very humorous.”-Yayoi Kusama.
"Pumpkin" (2000) is an important and dynamic brilliant red and black painted papier-maché and mixed media sculpture in the round by famous Japanese female avante-garde artis painter, sculptor, filmmaker, and performer Yayoi Kusama (b. 1929). This is a unique piece, meaures 9 x 12 x 12 inches, (22.9 x 30.5 x 30.5 cm). This work is offered for the first time at international auction.
Pumpkins have been one of Kusama’s preferred subjects since the 1980s, recurring with such frequency as to function as a kind of avatar for the artist. In this papier-maché sculptural pumpkin. Kusama employs another of her signature forms, dots. Kusama has used dots to a variety of effects in her work, employing them for their cosmic symbolism, their modeling capabilities, and the overall cathartic experience found in the obsessive mark making. Here, Kusama applies black dots in various sizes to a brilliant red painted surface to suggest formal and tonal gradation.

Yayoi Kusama is best known for her works featuring repeating motifs and psychedelic imagery that evoke themes of psychology, feminism, obsession, sex, creation, destruction, and intense self-reflection. Kusama was born in Matsumoto City and began painting at the age of ten, as a means of escaping a childhood of neglect and expressing her early experiences with hallucinogenic visions. These apparitions consisted of dots and patterns enveloping her surroundings, suggesting issues of mental illness which have continued to strongly influence her work. For her oeuvre, Kusama has received numerous awards and honors, including the 1996 International Art Critic Association Prize, the 2000 Education Minister’s Art Encouragement Prize & Foreign Minister’s Commendations, and the 2003 Ordre des Arts et des Lettres. Her work has been widely exhibited in major museums and galleries throughout the world, and has recently been the subject of solo shows at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY (2012); Opera Gallery, Hong Kong, China (2012); Tate Modern, London, England (2012); the National Museum of Art Osaka, Osaka, Japan (2012); Centre Pompidou, Paris, France (2011); Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane, Australia (2011); and Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, Spain (2011). Selected Public Collections:Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY
Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY
Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, CA
Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, CA
Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN
National Museum of Modern Art Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan
Hara Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, Japan
21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa, Japan
Seoul Museum of Art, Seoul, South Korea

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The seller has recorded the following condition for this lot:
Are there any restorations?
Date: 2011/y
Location: There is a minor 1 1/8 inch indentation 1 1/2 inches from the bottom of the Pumpkin which has been stabilized and filled in.
Notes: This indentation has been stabilized by a restorer. There is no paint loss visible.
Degree: Minor
Date: Recent
Location: There is a minor 1 1/8 inch indentation 1 1/2 inches from the bottom of the Pumpkin.
Notes: This indentation has been stabilized by a restorer. There is no paint loss visible.
Degree: Minor
Further information unavailable – contact Specialist for details

Definition Key
Image The central image area, composition, or focal point; the area inside the margins/plate marks.
Margin Areas bordering the central image, outside the plate marks, or the perimeter area.
Edge The farthest edge of the object.
Verso The reverse/back of the object.

Minor An existing condition which generally does not involve risk of loss.
Moderate Noticeable damage, increasing in severity and/or size; should be monitored or corrected by a conservator.
Major Distinct, recognizable damage; the stability of the work is questionable and risk is a factor. Requires the attention of a conservator.
Extreme Advanced and severe damage; work is insecure and at great risk.

  • Jean Art Gallery, Seoul Kukje Gallery, Seoul Private Collection, Seoul
  • Ships From: New York, USA
  • Shipping Dimensions: 9 x 12 x 12 in. (22.86 x 30.48 x 30.48 cm.)

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