Obsession with Patterns

While browsing through the photos that I took in Dublin, Ireland, my eyes fixed on a picture that shows a red scooter decorated with white polka dots. Again, it reminds me of Yayoi Kusama (草間彌生).

Kusama said about her painting Flower in 1945, "...a polka-dot has the form of the sun, which is a symbol of the energy of the whole world and our living life, and also the form of the moon, which is calm.  Round, soft, colorful, senseless and unknowing. Polka-dots become movement...Polka dots are a way to infinity."

Kusama's obsession for polka-dot patterns is a force in the story of one of 20th-century art's most compelling and enigmatic protagonists. Her fascination with what she described as "infinite repetition" drove her to cover paintings and installations with polka dots. She orchestrated happenings such as painting naked models with polka dots on Brooklyn Bridge. Donald Judd and Frank Stella both bought her work; Claes Oldenberg, Andy Warhol, Rei Kawabuko (川久保 玲, the founder of Comme des Garçons) were influenced by her. 

I'm interested in the "process" of making patterns. I'm curious about what was in the scooter owner's thoughts when he applied the dots one by one to the body of his Vespa. It is impossible to tell if he is a fan of Kusama, but at least from the lovely white polka dots and the whimsical black types "Bottoms up!!" he created, he surely knows how to temper passion with color, polka dots, and Irish life.


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