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A new biography of Yayoi Kusama is out from Laurence King Publishing this month, in graphic novel form. It sounds like something that should have already existed, and yet it is the first of its kind. Written and illustrated by Elisa Macellari, Kusama: The Graphic Novel follows the artist’s life, from her challenging childhood in Japan to her skyrocketing rise to fame around the world. At the heart of the book lies the story of how art became a lifeline for Kusama, especially as she struggled with hallucinations and crippling anxiety from her teenage years onward.
In the excerpt below, Macellari time travels to Kusama’s life in 1960s New York City, when the artist became “the high priestess of love and pacifism.” In joyous illustrations, Macellari recreates the artist’s “polka dot happenings” and “Body Festivals,” in which naked performers were covered in Kusama’s signature, mesmerizing dots. We’re also treated to imaginings of Kusama’s dinner dates with none other than her good friend, the artist Salvador Dalí.
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This week, LA’s new Academy Museum, the intersections of anti-Blackness and anti-fatness, a largely unknown 19th century Black theater in NYC, sign language interpreters, and more.
Titian’s paintings are masterpieces, with all the complications of the term.
Through “Historic Site,” an 8-foot-tall plaque and Historic Sight, a year-long rotating exhibition in Pittsburgh, the Black Cube Fellows investigate how history is constructed, remembered, and retold.
Lawson’s images, and the ways that she has discussed her process, seem to be actively reproducing the kind of big-dick energy power dynamics of White male artists who also claim mastery over their subject matter.
Jenkins’s new short film, the centerpiece of a MoMI exhibit on The Underground Railroad, uses his signature techniques to confront the viewer.
Romanticism to Ruin: Two Lost Works of Sullivan and Wright memorializes Chicago’s Garrick Theatre and Buffalo’s Larkin Building, which were razed to build a parking lot and a truck stop.