The world I see is endless space.
Yayoi Kusama

Described as ‘the world’s most popular artist’, Yayoi Kusama (Japan, b. 1929) is best known for her immersive polka-dot and mirror installations. Over the course of her 60-year career, she has engaged with an expansive idea of space and the human body. She uses several recurring motifs – dots, eyes, nets and pumpkins – to investigate repetition and to create sensory experiences that hint at the infinite.

THE SPIRITS OF THE PUMPKINS DESCENDED INTO THE HEAVENS is an installation comprising a vibrant yellow room overrun with black polka dots of various sizes. At its centre is a mirrored box, inside which are several dozen illuminated pumpkin sculptures that can be seen through windows. The pumpkins, endlessly reflected in the room’s internal mirrors, are also vivid yellow and adorned with dots. The dazzling combination of dots, mirrors and pumpkins creates an optical illusion – a sensation of infinite space and colour. Yayoi Kusama: THE SPIRITS OF THE PUMPKINS DESCENDED INTO THE HEAVENS is a National Gallery of Australia Touring Exhibition made possible with the support of Andrew and Hiroko Gwinnett.

Before you enter:

  • Be mindful of leaning too far over into the viewing space.
  • The pumpkins are dazzling but don't lose your hat, glasses, phone or accessories!
  • Please take care on the steps inside.
  • Make sure to cloak your backpacks and oversized bags.
  • Please do not touch the mirrored glass.

There is a maximum of 10 visitors at a time in the space, with ottomans available while you wait.

Presented in partnership with National Gallery of Australia
With thanks to the generous support of Andrew and Hiroko Gwinnett

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the installation wheelchair accessible?

The installation is wheelchair accessible however in the centre of the room is a mirrored box with two stairs. Our team have designed a periscope so people with mobility requirements can view this window. Please talk to one of our friendly team members when you arrive, and they will be able to assist with the periscope. Please note, the door to gain entry into the installation is 100.5cm wide.

Is the installation pram friendly?

Please park your pram prior to entering.

What is the best entry point if using a pram or wheelchair?

The best way to access this installation is via the Western Laneway and through the Fish Gates. Take the lift by the information desk to Level 3. Once you have reached Level 3, head to Gallery 6, where there is a ramp leading up to Gallery 17 and Gallery 16. You will then find the installation.

Is the installation suitable for those with sensory sensitivities?

The installation is visually stimulating and may not be suitable for visitors with sensory sensitivities.