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Yayoi Kusama Japan 1929-

March 3, 2019

 

  Yayoi Kusama is a Japanese contemporary artist who works primarily in sculpture and installation but is also active in painting, performance, film, fashion, poetry, fiction, and other arts. Her work is based on conceptual art and shows some attributes of feminism, minimalism, surrealism. I have nothing but respect for this artist who has had a steadfast commitment to her art like few others. It seems to have taken every minute of her 88+ years to achieve the status of one of the most highly sought after artists in the world, and the top selling female artist.

Born in Japan in 1929, Kusama came to the United States in 1957 and quickly found herself at the epicenter of the New York avant-garde. Navigating the art scene in NY  is a daunting task for any artist at any time, but at that time it was very much a world of a few big name stars like Andy Warhol and Stella. It took her many decades of perseverance (the word of the week) to be shown and gain acceptance.  After achieving fame through groundbreaking exhibitions and art “happenings,” she returned to her native country in 1973 and is now one of Japan’s most prominent contemporary artists. Her installations, paintings, sculptures, and interactive pieces have been on exhibition at all of the major museums and galleries including the Venice Biennale . She has been the recipient of  numerous international awards and prizes including,  The Education Minister's Art Encouragement Prize and Foreign-Minister's Commendations ,the Asahi Prize ,  the French Ordre des Arts et des Lettres , and the Nagano Governor Prize (for the contribution in encouragement of art and culture), the  National Lifetime Achievement Awards, the Order of the Rising Sun, the Praemium Imperiale Painting Prize and the Golden prize from the Italian Academy of Arts. 

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* The children loved the wacky and wonderful world of Kusama. We had holidays , snow days and sick days this past two weeks and they "persevered"  with lots of effort and created some great pieces! 

 

 

 

 

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 Week One: Cave Paintings

It has been an eventful week in our Art Literacy class. We have been all around the world.  I would like to thank all of my wonderful students for their great efforts. We began with the story of the discovery of the discovery of cave paintings in Lascaux,  France  and also looked at images from  Spain , where the oldest known cave paintings have been found,  in the cave called El Castillo. The prehistoric dots and crimson hand stencils are now the world's oldest known cave art that dates more than 40,800 years old.

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