23 July – 29 August 2022
Turbine Hall, Tate Modern
Over the school summer holidays, Tate Modern invites visitors of all ages to help transform a blank white apartment into a sea of colourful dots. Yayoi Kusama’s The obliteration room opens on 23 July as part of UNIQLO Tate Play, Tate Modern’s free programme of playful art-inspired activities for families. As well as having a chance to cover every available surface of the installation with bright circular stickers, families will also be able to create their own work of art to add to an ever-growing garden in the Turbine Hall.
The obliteration room is one of Kusama’s most ambitious interactive works. Originally commissioned by the Queensland Art Gallery in Australia, the installation consists of a completely white space fully furnished with entirely white furniture. Visitors are handed a sticker sheet of colourful dots with which to leave their mark on this stark interior, which slowly becomes transformed into a riot of colour. The work reflects Kusama’s enduring obsessions with accumulation, obliteration, and becoming one with the artwork.
Born in 1929 in Matsumoto, Japan, Yayoi Kusama came to international attention in 1960s New York for a wide-ranging creative practice that has encompassed installation, painting, sculpture, fashion design and writing. The artist has been the subject of exhibitions around the world, including a major travelling retrospective initiated by Tate Modern in 2012 and the recently extended exhibition of Infinity Mirror Rooms, now open until 11 June 2023. Since the 1970s Kusama has lived in Tokyo, where she continues to work prolifically and to international acclaim.
UNIQLO Tate Play was first launched in 2021 with the hugely popular installation: Ei Arakawa’s Mega Please Draw Freely, in which families could draw all over the floor of the Turbine Hall. New projects are staged each school holiday, alongside free activities and creative materials during term time. Always taking inspiration from the artists and artworks on display at Tate Modern, UNIQLO Tate Play offers families new ways to play together and get creative, with over 147,000 people having taken part so far. This coming half term, free drop-in workshops will run from 28 May until 5 June inviting families to create surrealist collages inspired by the current exhibition Surrealism Beyond Borders.
UNIQLO Tate Play: The obliteration room will be at Tate Modern from 23 July until 29 August 2022.