Yayoi Kusami @ Hirshhorn

Next date: November 26, 2022 10:30 am

Pre-registration is highly recommended

The Hirshhorn museum is now open daily from 10am to 5pm, and there are two great exhibits worth seeing: One with Eternity and The Weather.

The first of these, One with Eternity: Yayoi Kusama requires a free, timed entry pass.  If you are a Hirshhorn member, you can book your free Hirshhorn ticket online.  Non-members can obtain passes from the museum same-day, but you will need to get there early.  We arrived shortly after the museum opened on a recent Saturday and nabbed the last available tickets, for 1:30pm.  The same-day passes are available as early as 9:30 am.

Yayoi Kusama is obsessed with three things: polka dots, phalli and eternity.  And what could be more timeless than the spotted dick?  The first room (pictured below) offers visitors a new perspective on the speckled pumpkin that is usually outside the museum.

Large spotted pumpkin from Yayoi Kusama's One with Eternity exhibit at the Hirshhorn.

I have long admired Yayoi Kusama’s spotted pumpkin in the outdoor garden of the Hirshhorn. Now you can see it in its element.


Next, proceed to a mirrored room full of spotted plush phalli.   You’ll need to check your bag before entering the room, lest you are tempted to take home one of these tantalizing soft toys.

Next, you’ll work your way through another mirrored room, this one full of Chinese hanging paper (or gauze) lanterns.  The lanterns are jet black with colorful — you guessed it — polka dots, and they disappear into the infinite distance through mirror trickery.

Yayoi Kusami’s exhibition at the Hirshhorn is a fun rump of color and illusion.  Be sure to catch it before it leaves town at the end of November.