I recently submitted an illustration I made of Yayoi Kusama to the latest issue of Regina Schilling‘s Hey Lady! zine. I haven’t submitted anything anywhere in a long time, but when I saw there was a whole zine that would be dedicated to Kusama and her work, I got to drawing right away.
The pieces from this issue will be on view and for sale at an issue launch at Printed Matter in NYC on October 27th. The pieces will also be in a book of the exhibition, which will also be available at the party for purchase.
I won’t try to describe Kusama’s work or criticize it here, I suggest you look her up if you’re interested. I discovered her work a few years after my dad passed away, and her depictions of infinity (“infinity nets” as she calls them) and self-obliteration with one’s art and work really moved me. I don’t know that she ever intended to make art about death; she spent most of her career working more or less from an asylum. But as anguished and strange as she may seem, I found her work vast and beautiful, her ethic and self-healing admirable. “Art-medicine”, she says.
Circles are indeed meditative– I found myself to be so much more relaxed after working on this. I use a lot of little lines in my work, so this wasn’t too much of a stretch for my carpal tunneled hands!
The phrase “I’m still here” penciled above her tiara is from an article
from New York Magazine
on her retrospective (2012) at the Whitney;
it refers to a quote from the museum’s curator– “As David Kiehl, the Whitney curator, imagines her thinking while painting: ‘I’m still here, making a circle, I’m still here, making a circle.'”.
Check out Hey Lady! Do it! And thanks again, Regina, for putting this all together.