Hirshhorn Plaza

May 15, 2017

Hirshhorn’s “Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors” Breaks Records
Museum Welcomes Highest Attendance in 40 Years
Artist Releases Exclusive “Thank You” Video

Aries and Aubrie in Yayoi Kusama’s “The Obliteration Room” at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, 2017. Photo by Penelope Fly.

Aries and Aubrie in Yayoi Kusama’s “The Obliteration Room” at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, 2017. Photo by Penelope Fly.

The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden announced nearly 160,000 people visited “Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors,” the first exhibition to feature six of Yayoi Kusama’s dazzling Infinity Mirror Rooms, in its world debut that began Feb. 23 and closed yesterday May 14. The museum welcomed a record 475,000 visitors to its building and sculpture garden during the same period—its highest recorded spring visitation since the museum’s opening and double its average attendance.

In appreciation, Kusama released a rare video message for Hirshhorn audiences stating “I am very happy and grateful that you have come to see my exhibition….Thank you very much. I look forward to the future.”

  • Nearly 160,000 people experienced “Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors,” and the museum galleries and sculpture garden welcomed a record 475,000 visitors.
  • The hashtag #InfiniteKusama has reached 91 million Twitter and Instagram accounts, with 330 million impressions (read visitor perspectives on social media).
  • Instagram users posted 34,000 images of the exhibition to their accounts (see the Instagram feed).
  • Visitors contributed approximately 750,000 dot stickers to “The Obliteration Room,” gradually obliterating the all-white space in a riot of color (watch the time-lapse video).
  • Trained guides led more than 10,500 members of school and community groups on exhibition tours, including special American Sign Language tours and “touch tours” for the visually impaired (view images).
  • Nearly 100 visitors with mobility constraints were able to use virtual-reality (VR) headsets to experience VR versions of the rooms, part of Hirshhorn’s commitment to radical accessibility.

Kusama kicked off the Hirshhorn’s 2017–18 schedule of exhibitions and programs featuring a diverse group of contemporary artists whose work reflects global conversations that shape history, politics and culture, including German artist Markus Lüpertz, Swiss artist Nicolas Party, and American artists Yoko Ono, Theaster Gates and Mark Bradford.

Markus Lüpertz: Threads of History” opens May 24, “Nicolas Party: sunrise, sunset” opens June 7 and “Summer of Yoko Ono,” a celebration of the 10th anniversary of the iconic “Wish Tree for Washington, D.C.,” will invite visitors to participate in Yoko Ono’s community-based installations starting June 17.

“Infinity Mirrors” opens next at the Seattle Art Museum June 30, followed by The Broad in Los Angeles (Oct. 21–Jan. 1, 2018), the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto (March 3, 2018–May 27, 2018), the Cleveland Museum of Art (July 9, 2018–Sept. 30, 2018) and the High Museum of Art, in Atlanta (Nov. 18, 2018–Feb. 17, 2019).

About the Hirshhorn 

The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden is the national museum of modern and contemporary art and a leading voice for 21st-century art and culture. Part of the Smithsonian, the Hirshhorn is located prominently on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. With nearly 12,000 paintings, sculptures, photographs, mixed-media installations, works on paper and new media works, its holdings encompass one of the most important collections of postwar American and European art in the world. The Hirshhorn presents diverse exhibitions and offers an array of public programs on the art of our time—free to all, 364 days a year. For more information, visit hirshhorn.si.edu.