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Narcissus Garden by Yayoi Kusama

  • Art
  1. A person crouches by the reflective balls in the Narcissus Garden install at the Museum of Sydney
    Photograph: James Horan 'Narcissus Garden' (detail), Yayoi Kusama, 1966/2002
  2. A close look at the many reflective balls in Yayoi Kusama's Narcissus Garden
    Photograph: Natasha Harth for QAGOMA'Narcissus Garden' (detail), Yayoi Kusama, 1966/2002

Time Out says

The Pop Art legend's ode to self-reflection has arrived in Sydney

Yayoi Kusama is known for her immersive installations that carry the viewer into a sense of the infinite. Her work's appearance at galleries all over the globe attract swarms of viewers looking to snap up a covetable Instagram pic or to simply lean in to the void and feel swallowed up by the eternal.

Narcissus Garden, one of Kusama's many famous works, has had many incarnations over the years and is now floating in to Sydney on a mini tour of our city's historical buildings and museums. The installation siphons Kusama's obsession with infinity (and, well, dots) into a series of high-shine orbs that reflect the surrounding visible world and each other in a never-ending loop. True to the Greek myth that the installation takes it's title from you can see your own reflection in the many balls of Narcissus Garden and contemplate your existence – just make sure you don't fall in!

Adding to the reflective concept of Narcissus Garden is the colonial contexts in which it is being shown. Sydney Living Museums (SLM) is bringing the work to Museum of Sydney until April and then on to the heritage haunts of Vaucluse House and Elizabeth Bay House (for SLM members only). The intention is for the viewers' reflections to extend beyond themselves and the room they're in to what it means for these mirror orbs to also capture the historical tastes and loaded architecture of the colonial spaces they're installed in.

Catch this remarkable work from one of the world's greatest living artists at Museum of Sydney from February 20 to April 18, Vaucluse House from April 24 to May 23 and for SLM members-only, Elizabeth Bay House from May to late June. You can also see Narcissus Garden by Yayoi Kusama at Museum of Sydney after hours as part of Sydney's Culture Up Late program. The museum will be open 5- 8pm on Thursdays throughout February and March, find out more here.

Written by
Claire Finneran


Free with entry to the venues
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