In parallel with the flagship event of the Grand Palais, the International Fair of Contemporary Art is also exposed Hors les Murs. Contemporary sculptures and installations unfold in the Parisian urban landscape, from the Jardin des Tuileries to the Place de la Concorde. For its forty-sixth edition, the FIAC, in collaboration with the Victoria Miro Gallery, gives carte blanche to the Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama. As Halloween approaches, Place Vendôme, usually so serious, is adorned with a giant pumpkin, colorful and instagramable at will.

If many names have made Place Vendôme (1st arrondissement) their playground - like the star duo Elmgreen & Dragset, Paul McCarthy or Tadashi Kawamata - it is now the turn of Japanese visual artist Yayoi Kusama, to exhibit all aspects of his creative imagination.

A few meters from the iconic column, Yayoi Kusama erects his installation Life of the Pumpkin Recites, All About the Biggest Love for the People, made especially for the occasion. This monumental yellow pumpkin covered with black dots brings together the obsessions of the artist. The pea pattern, the shape of the pumpkin, the bright color, the inflatable material, the presence of light ... everything is there.

Far from being meaningless, the fetish vegetable of the artist is inspired by its history. Kabbal squash accompanied the girl's childhood: her family cultivated them in Japan. "What interested me most was the generous lack of pretension of the pumpkin. And also his strong spiritual balance. ", says the designer in her autobiography Infinity Net: The Autobiography of Yayoi Kusama.

With his realization, the nonagenarian artist surprises us once again. By integrating her eccentric and visual language with the historic architecture of Place Vendôme, she creates a dialogue between her art and the surrounding urban context.

A spectacular work that inspires us as Halloween approaches.

To learn more, visit the FIAC website

Photographs © YAYOI KUSAMA © Marc Domage

Léa Pagnier

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