Yayoi Kusama’s Fireflies on the Water
Jun 13–Oct 28, 2012


The installation Fireflies on the Water. Thousands of tiny colorful lights.

Yayoi Kusama (b. 1929), Fireflies on the Water, 2002. Mirror, plexiglass, 150 lights and water, 111 × 144 1/2 × 144 1/2 in. (281.9 × 367 × 367 cm) overall. Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; purchase, with funds from the Postwar Committee and the Contemporary Painting and Sculpture Committee and partial gift of Betsy Wittenborn Miller 2003.322a-tttttttt. © Yayoi Kusama. Photograph courtesy Robert Miller Gallery

Yayoi Kusama’s depictions of seemingly endless space have been a central focus of her artistic career. Kusama’s Fireflies on the Water (2002)—with its carefully constructed environment of lights, mirrors, and water—is one of the outstanding examples of this kind of installation, which creates a space in which individual viewers are invited to transcend their sense of self.

This exhibition is organized in collaboration with Tate Modern, London.

Supported by

Louis Vuitton

Additional support for the Whitney’s presentation of Yayoi Kusama is provided by Carla Emil and Rich Silverstein, The Gage Fund, Susan Hancock/Royal T, the Juliet Lea Hillman Simonds Foundation, the Asian Cultural Council,
The Japan Foundation, New York, and Linda and Andrew Safran.

With thanks to Victoria Miro Gallery, London; Ota Fine Arts, Tokyo; and Yayoi Kusama Studio, Inc.
for their support of the international tour of the Yayoi Kusama exhibition.

Additional thanks to Gagosian Gallery for their assistance with the Yayoi Kusama exhibition in New York.