Celebrating what would have been the 110th birthday of postmodern architect Philip Johnson and the 10-year anniversary of Johnson's Glass House opening to the public, artist Yayoi Kusama’s “Narcissus Garden,” which has been featured at other locations such as New York's Central Park for the Whitney Biennial and Paris' Jardin de Tuileries, has been installed at the house-turned-museum. Originally created 50 years ago for the 33rd Venice Biennale (directed by Italian art critic Gian Alberto Dell’Acqua) the Japanese-born artist’s kinetic piece will float in the man-made pond at the 49-acre site in New Canaan, Conn., until Nov. 30.
For the past 60 years, the feminist icon and trailblazer of the 1960’s counter cultural movement has been creating large-scale projects in a range of mediums, most of which are covered in so many circles to the point of creating a dizzying effect. The 87-year-old artist has also extended this repetitive form in her immersive installations that use mirrors, such as her "Infinity Mirrored Room - The Souls of Millions of Light Years Away," currently featured at The Broad in Los Angeles.
“Narcissus Gardens” provides a similar experience, while amplifying the scenes of the surrounding natural environment. The multiple mirrored surfaces, comprised of 1,300 floating steel spheres each approximately 12 inches in diameter, reflects the wooded landscape. Floating next to the Johnson-designed “Pavilion in the Pond” (a concrete structure consisting of pre-fabricated concrete arches, roof segments, and base built in 1962), the installation will still maintain its own aspect of movement by flowing with the wind and water’s natural currents.
In addition to Kusama’s elder piece, her recently completed “PUMPKIN,” previously featured in Denmark's Louisana Museum of Modern Art, is installed on a concrete sculpture footing on a hillside meadow northeast of the Brick House, also designed by Johnson and built in 1949.