Radical Connectivity

“I wanted to start a revolution, using art to build the sort of society I myself envisioned.” Yayoi Kusama.

In the late 1960s, in the countercultural atmosphere generated by the struggle for civil rights and against the Vietnam War, Kusama developed an artistic practice centered on public action and performance. The artist denounced racial and gender stereotypes, criticized American war policy, and attracted the attention of the media with her provocative public happenings, especially those in which nude bodies were covered with polka dots in an act of “self-obliteration.” This is a fundamental concept in Kusama’s philosophy, which represents liberation as a means of communal healing, to radically connect individuals, especially those who experienced being on the margins of life. Kusama turned to the power of media to propagate her philosophy, while also aiming to increase her visibility and notoriety.