One of the main reasons for coming to New York this year was to see Yayoi Kusama’s “Fireflies on the Water” exhibit at the Guggenheim Museum. For the most part, my obsessions over other people’s art has to do with their aesthetic (clearly, right?). When it comes to Kusama, I think it goes deeper than that. I am in love with her history, as well as her reasons for working the way she does.
For years I have felt strange for my obsession for work. I come from a relatively dark southern upbringing that caused me draw obsessively as a kid. Sometimes, in order to get things out, the only way I could function in the haunting and terrifying upbringing that I had, was to black out mentally, and draw for hours. I drew stories, and stories, and the pages piled up into MANY thick spiral bound notebooks . By 8th grade, I had over 30 notebooks filled completely on every page of stories from front to back drawn out.
These notebooks changed into sketchbooks, and continued into my college years, until that one fateful day when I just stopped…. drawing and painting for 7 years.
When I decided to pick up painting years later, the flow of work did not come casually as a hobby. The minute I started painting again, I began to paint immediately as if it was my career. There was this obsession to create volumes and volumes of work, as if I was making up for the past 7 years of silence. From then till now I have spent around 8 to 16 hours daily painting, mostly in one sitting. I draw and draft shapes upon shapes upon shapes until my brain zones out of vertigo into this silent place of methodical mechanical operation.
So, in this fashion, I identify with Kusama’s obsessive work. Sitting in a room full of her aesthetic, I can feel the zones that she went into to create the masterpieces she has done… And because of this, and her exhibit… I decided to do a Kusama piece. This is number 41, and goes in the Contemporary Modern Series. It is called “Kusama Mickey” and largely reflects the aesthetic of the “Princess of Polka Dots”. This piece also mirrors the feeling of infinity that Kusama exudes with her work, and speaks of the obsession that artists have in creating what we do.