This Room Will Blow Your Mind

So much of New York life is spent trying to gain entry into ever smaller rooms where, one imagines, the real party’s at. [This idea was floated in Jay McInernery’s Bright Lights Big City.] The joke is, usually that tiny room is just as boring as the others. 

That is, until you visit The Whitney for the Yayoi Kusama retrospective which opens today. 

There in a small room behind the lobby about the size of a closet. Visitors wait in line to spend one minute in there. There will be a line.when you go. 

But once that door opens, infinity opens. The installation is entitled "Fireflies In The Water," it’s one of Kusama’s later works. From a mirrored ceiling hang hundreds of LED lights, reflected endlessly by the mirrored walls. Visitors stand on a gangplank extending over a shallow wall-to-wall pool of water. The experience is, to say the least, absolutely fucking mindblowing. 

The rest of the exhibit is nice. I’m a big fan of Georgia O’Keeffe’s handwriting (the two artists exchanged letters) but Kusama’s polka dots don’t hold a candle to the ecstatic immersion on the first floor. 

So go, wait, and be blown away.

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