Art Cart: Soft Sculptures

What comes to mind when you think about sculptures? For most people, it’s a hard three dimensional object. Artist Yayoi Kusama pioneered her own unique sewn sculptures-with texture similar to a pillow! Get inspired by Kusama’s innovation, play with texture, and make your own soft sculpture. 

Find the Art Cart on the Lower Level and pick up your soft sculpting materials. 

Please note, this experience does not include entry into One with Eternity: Yayoi Kusama in the Hirshhorn Collection. Due to the nature of the featured artworks, free timed passes are required to experience One with Eternity. Plan your visit


Do this at home! Sculpt your own pinch pot inspired by artist Yayoi Kusama. Create.

A small, two-leafed plant grows out of a orange pumpkin-shaped pot featuring vertical patterns of polka dots.


ABOUT THE ART CART

Want to make art inspired by your favorite Hirshhorn works on view? The Art Cart offers young artists a hands-on maker experience during their visit to the Hirshhorn. Each week’s Art Cart offers a fresh and fun theme featuring an artwork on view, an artmaking activity to do at the Museum, and kids projects to extend the fun at home! 

The Art Cart is free; no registration required. Drop in any Thursday between 10am-12pm. 

Stroller Parking is available in the Lobby and the Lower Level.

Help us stay safe and healthy! Review Smithsonian health and safety guidelines before your visit.

Polka Dot Party

Admission is free for Hirshhorn Insider members.
General admission tickets are $20 online, $25 at the door.

Not yet a Hirshhorn Insider? Join today to unlock benefits including book-ahead Kusama passes.


We’re throwing a summer party inspired by Yayoi Kusama at the Hirshhorn Museum on Friday, July 22, from 7:00 to 9:00PM with special perk for our Hirshhorn Insider Members. Everyone is invited!

Save your spot: Tickets are available online starting Wednesday, June 29 at noon.

The dress code? Polka dots, of course. Pop into your party clothes, enjoy exhibition spotlights, have themed drinks and snacks with our DJ on the Plaza, and tap your inner artist at art making stations during this summer soirée.

As the heart of our creative community, we’re thanking all our members with an invitation to a Hirshhorn Insider Member Social, 6:30–7:00PM. They also receive exclusive Polka Dot Party benefits!

Join as a Hirshhorn Insider today!

Reserve tickets


SCHEDULE

6:30 PM | Insider Member Social

7:00 PM | Annual Insider Celebration Begins

Entrance to the event is on Independence Ave

Art Cart: Obliteration Station

Stop by our Obliteration Station! Young artists will learn about artist Yayoi Kusama, her practice, and use polka-dots to obliterate their own work of art.

Find the Art Cart on the Lower Level to pick up your materials.

Please note, this experience does not include entry into One with Eternity: Yayoi Kusama in the Hirshhorn Collection. Due to the nature of the featured artworks, free timed passes are required to experience One with Eternity. Plan your visit


Do this at home! Can you paint a dot? Now, can you paint a million dots? Make a painting inspired by Yayoi Kusama’s use of seemingly infinite dots. Create.

A long, white sheet of paper covered in streaks and circles of various colors.


ABOUT THE ART CART

Want to make art inspired by your favorite Hirshhorn works on view? The Art Cart offers young artists a hands-on maker experience during their visit to the Hirshhorn. Each week’s Art Cart offers a fresh and fun theme featuring an artwork on view, an artmaking activity to do at the Museum, and kids projects to extend the fun at home! 

The Art Cart is free; no registration required. Drop in any Thursday between 10am-12pm. 

Stroller Parking is available in the Lobby and Lower Level.

Help us stay safe and healthy! Review Smithsonian health and safety guidelines before your visit.

(Online) On Yayoi Kusama at the Hirshhorn: Presenting “Eternity”

This program is online only. 

Tickets available now!
General tickets: $25
Hirshhorn Insider member tickets: $20

The Hirshhorn set records with its 2017 exhibition, Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors, which featured the Japanese artist’s acclaimed polka dots and spellbinding visions. Now, the museum has opened One with Eternity: Yayoi Kusama in the Hirshhorn Collection, an exhibit featuring five of Kusama’s artworks in the Hirshhorn collection, including two of her immersive Infinity Mirror Rooms. Building on the legacy of the previous blockbuster, One with Eternity cements the enduring art-historical connection between the visionary artist and the Smithsonian’s national museum of modern art on the National Mall.

The exhibition illuminates Kusama’s seven-decade practice through works in the museum’s permanent collection, including Pumpkin (2016) and Flowers—Overcoat (1964); and an early painting. Among the collection’s new additions is the artist’s very first Infinity Mirror Room, created originally in 1965, and one of her most recent rooms.

Betsy Johnson, assistant curator at the Hirshhorn Museum, who organized One with Eternity, will discuss Yayoi Kusama and the exhibition within the broader context of the artist’s life and practice.

This program is presented by Smithsonian Associates in partnership with the Hirshhorn Museum.

A ticket to this online program does not include entry into One with Eternity: Yayoi Kusama in the Hirshhorn Collection. Questions about how to see the exhibition? See our FAQ.


Image credit:

Yayoi Kusama, “Infinity Mirrored Room—My Heart Is Dancing into the Universe,” 2018. Wood and glass mirrored room with paper lanterns, 119 5/8 x 245 1/8 x 245 1/8 in. (304 x 622.4 x 622.4 cm). Courtesy Ota Fine Arts and Victoria Miro, London/Venice. © YAYOI KUSAMA. Purchased jointly by the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C. (Joseph H. Hirshhorn Purchase Fund, 2020), and the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, with funds from the George B. and Jenny R. Mathews Fund, by exchange.

(Online) On the Healing Power of Creativity: Deborah Roberts and Cleo Wade

FREE

This program is online only (via ZoomYouTube, and Facebook Live). Advance registration is required for Zoom participation, including the chance to ask the artist a question (time permitting). After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the talk.

Join artist Deborah Roberts, poet and artist Cleo Wade, and Hirshhorn Assistant Curator Betsy Johnson to explore the transformative and healing powers of creativity.

Roberts and Wade make different kinds of creative gestures – Roberts most often uses the power of images and Wade the power of words – but through their work, they each share a message of hope, resilience, and a greater future for women and people of color. Roberts creates powerful, collaged portraits of girls and boys in an effort to challenge standard “ideals” of beauty and emphasize the important message that “every child has character and agency to find their own way amidst the complicated narratives of American, African American and art history.” Likewise, Wade’s popular Instagram account (@cleowade) and published books are full of poetry, affirmations, and illustratations that encourage readers to remain hopeful through the challenges of daily life.

This program is inspired by the work of Yayoi Kusama and the Hirshhorn’s current exhibition One with Eternity: Yayoi Kusama in the Hirshhorn Collection.

The program is made possible with generous support from and is presented in partnership with La Grande Dame by Veuve Clicquot. The partnership is a continuation of the storied French champagne House’s commitment to supporting creative voices and its longstanding relationship with the visionary artist, who lent her signature dot motif to the La Grande Dame 2012 cuveé.

La Grande Dame invited renowned poet and artist Cleo Wade to bring her own vision of optimism and joy to Washington, D.C. Her poem celebrates audacious women, and encapsulates the bold spirit of Madame Clicquot.

Read “What Comes After Darkness”


Schedule

12:50 pm EST | Zoom broadcast opens

1 pm EST | Cleo Wade and Deborah Roberts in conversation with Betsy Johnson


ABOUT THE ARTISTS

Deborah Roberts in studio setting

Deborah Roberts is a mixed media artist whose work challenges the notion of ideal beauty. Her work has been exhibited internationally across the USA and Europe. Roberts’ work is in the collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, New York; Brooklyn Museum, New York, New York; The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, New York; LACMA, Los Angeles, California; the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond, Virginia and the Blanton Museum of Art, Austin, Texas, among several other institutions. She was selected to participate in the Robert Rauschenberg Residency (2019) and was a finalist for the 2019 Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition, as well as the recipient of the Anonymous Was A Woman Grant (2018), and the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant (2016). Roberts received her MFA from Syracuse University, New York. She lives and works in Austin, Texas. Roberts is represented by Stephen Friedman Gallery, London and Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects, CA.

Poet and writer Cleo Wade. Dressed in pink, squatting in an infinity room.

Cleo Wade is a writer, poet, and the New York Times Best-selling author of What The Road Said, Heart Talk: Poetic Wisdom for a Better Life, and Where To Begin: A Small Book about Your Power to Create Big Change. Her work is dedicated to exploring love, freedom, self-care and the power of community. She has been called the poet of her generation by Time Magazine, named one of the 100 most creative people in business by Fast Company, and sits on the board of The Lower East Side Girls Club, the National Black Theatre in Harlem, and the Women’s Prison Association. Cleo is from New Orleans, Louisiana and currently lives in California with her family.


This program and One with Eternity: Yayoi Kusama in the Hirshhorn Collection have been made possible with generous support from La Grande Dame by Veuve Clicquot. Champagne La Grand Dame Veuve Clicquot

(Online) Film: Kusama: Infinity

FREE
Advance registration is required for link to screening. This program is online only. Screening will be available for the first 500 viewers on a first-come, first served basis.
Advance Insider tickets available now (space is limited)
General tickets available Monday, February 28, 12 pm ET
Questions? Email Hirshhornexperience@si.edu


Get to know the artist behind the mindblowing Infinity Mirror Rooms in One With Eternity: Yayoi Kusama in the Hirshhorn Collection.

Now the top-selling female artist in the world, Yayoi Kusama overcame impossible odds to bring her radical artistic vision to the world stage. For decades her work pushed boundaries that often alienated her from both her peers and those in power in the art world. Kusama was an underdog with everything stacked against her: the trauma of growing up in Japan during World War II, life in a dysfunctional family that discouraged her creative ambitions, sexism and racism in the art establishment, mental illness in a culture where that was particularly shameful and even continuing to pursue and be devoted to her art full time on the cusp of her 90s. In spite of it all, Kusama has endured and has created a legacy of artwork that spans the disciplines of painting, sculpture, installation art, performance art, poetry and literary fiction. After working as an artist for over six decades, people around the globe are experiencing her installation Infinity Mirrored Rooms in record numbers, as Kusama continues to create new work every day.

Running time: 78 minutes

Subtitles (CC) will be available for this film. If you have any questions about accessibility for this program, please email hirshhornexperience@si.edu.

Image credit: Image courtesy of Swank Motion Pictures

(CANCELED) STORYTIME: Let’s Play With Pumpkin

Join us for a polka-dot journey in the Hirshhorn Sculpture Garden! After a close look at the polka-dot-covered sculpture Pumpkin by Yayoi Kusama, we’ll read Let’s Play by Hervé Tullet and participate in hands-on polka-dot pattern making.

STORYTIME explores contemporary art through stories and movement. Museum staff will read aloud a book, introduce children to an artist in the collection, and lead a hands-on activity. Nursing moms welcome. Stroller parking is available in the Hirshhorn lobby. Groups of 10 or more should contact mcgettigant@si.edu to reserve a program in advance. Please note: snacks are not allowed inside the Museum, but you may eat outside on our Plaza before or after the program.

 

Hirshhorn/AM: No Access Washington, DC

No Access Washington, DC: The Capital’s Hidden Treasures, Haunts, and Forgotten Places tells a story of the nation’s capital through places in, near, under, over, or around the city—a collection of spaces that most people don’t see, can’t see, rarely see, don’t know how to see, or haven’t seen.

Join author Beth Kanter and photographer Emily Pearl Goodstein for a morning chat about how they took a journey beneath DC’s most iconic buildings, like the massive undercroft below the Lincoln Memorial, and discovered hidden-in-plain-sight wonders, such as the mini Washington Monument and a neighborhood home that is a thriving habitat for plastic dinosaurs. Don’t miss an opportunity to discover a side of the city not shown on postcards, but gaze-worthy all the same.

Dolcezza Coffee & Gelato opens at 8:45 am.

STORYTIME: Let’s Play with Pumpkin

Join us for a polka-dot journey in the Hirshhorn Sculpture Garden! After a close look at the polka-dot-covered sculpture Pumpkin by Yayoi Kusama, we’ll read Let’s Play by Hervé Tullet and participate in hands-on polka-dot pattern making.

Stroller parking available in the Lobby. Late? Join us on the Plaza. An ASL interpreter may be requested for this program with two weeks advance notice.


STORYTIME explores contemporary art through stories and movement. Museum staff will read aloud a book, introduce children to an artist in the collection, and lead a hands-on activity. Nursing moms welcome. Stroller parking is available in the Hirshhorn lobby. Groups of 10 or more should contact mcgettigant@si.edu to reserve a program in advance. An ASL Interpreter may be requested for this program. Two weeks advance notice is appreciated. Please note: snacks are not allowed inside the Museum, but you may eat outside on our Plaza before or after the program.

 

 

STORYTIME: Let’s Play with Pumpkin

Join us for a polka-dot journey in the Hirshhorn Sculpture Garden! After a close look at the polka-dot-covered sculpture Pumpkin by Yayoi Kusama, we’ll read Let’s Play by Hervé Tullet and participate in hands-on polka-dot pattern making.

Stroller parking available in the Lobby. Late? Join us on the Plaza. An ASL interpreter may be requested for this program with two weeks advance notice.


STORYTIME explores contemporary art through stories and movement. Museum staff will read aloud a book, introduce children to an artist in the collection, and lead a hands-on activity. Nursing moms welcome. Stroller parking is available in the Hirshhorn lobby. Groups of 10 or more should contact mcgettigant@si.edu to reserve a program in advance. An ASL Interpreter may be requested for this program. Two weeks advance notice is appreciated. Please note: snacks are not allowed inside the Museum, but you may eat outside on our Plaza before or after the program.