Yayoi Kusama’s The obliteration room coming to Tate Modern for the Summer - FAD Magazine

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Yayoi Kusama’s The obliteration room coming to Tate Modern for the Summer

Over the school summer holidays, Tate Modern invites visitors of all ages to help transform a blank white apartment into a sea of colourful dots. Yayoi Kusama’s The obliteration room opens on 23rd July as part of UNIQLO Tate Play, Tate Modern’s free programme of playful art-inspired activities for families. As well as having a chance to cover every available surface of the installation with bright circular stickers, families will also be able to create their own work of art to add to an ever-growing garden in the Turbine Hall.

The obliteration room is one of Kusama’s most ambitious interactive works. Originally commissioned by the Queensland Art Gallery in Australia, the installation consists of a completely white space fully furnished with entirely white furniture. Visitors are handed a sticker sheet of colourful dots with which to leave their mark on this stark interior, which slowly becomes transformed into a riot of colour. The work reflects Kusama’s enduring obsessions with accumulation, obliteration, and becoming one with the artwork.

Born in 1929 in Matsumoto, Japan, Yayoi Kusama came to international attention in 1960s New York for a wide-ranging creative practice that has encompassed installation, painting, sculpture, fashion design and writing. The artist has been the subject of exhibitions around the world, including a major travelling retrospective initiated by Tate Modern in 2012 and the recently extended exhibition of Infinity Mirror Rooms, now open until 11 June 2023. Since the 1970s Kusama has lived in Tokyo, where she continues to work prolifically and to international acclaim.

UNIQLO Tate Play was first launched in 2021 with the hugely popular installation: Ei Arakawa’s Mega Please Draw Freely, in which families could draw all over the floor of the Turbine Hall. New projects are staged each school holiday, alongside free activities and creative materials during term time. Always taking inspiration from the artists and artworks on display at Tate Modern, UNIQLO Tate Play offers families new ways to play together and get creative, with over 147,000 people having taken part so far. This coming half term, free drop-in workshops will run from 28 May until 5 June inviting families to create surrealist collages inspired by the current exhibition Surrealism Beyond Borders.

UNIQLO Tate Play: The obliteration room will be at Tate Modern from 23rd July until 29th August 2022.  


UNIQLO has partnered with some of the world’s preeminent museums to deepen public interest in art through free admission programmes, collaboration merchandise, events, and other initiatives. Listed below are key partnerships that UNIQLO has formed in this regard:

May 2013 – present                      MoMA (Museum of Modern Art), New York City
Mar. 2016 – present                     Tate Modern, London
Sept. 2017 – present                    MFA (Museum of Fine Arts), Boston
Mar. 2018 – present                      MACBA (Museum of Contemporary Art) Art), Barcelona
Feb. 2021 – present                      Louvre Museum, Paris

UNIQLO has supported Tate since 2016 incorporating support of UNIQLO Tate Lates and subsequently the Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirror Rooms exhibition at Tate Modern. From 2021 our support has enabled the creation of UNIQLO Tate Play, a dedicated family programme at Tate Modern launched last June that aims to make art accessible for all. 

Speaking about the UNIQLO Tate Play partnership, Fast Retailing Chairman, President and CEO, Tadashi Yanai, commented,

‘I am honored and proud to be partnering once again with the world renowned Tate Modern. The renewed collaboration with Tate Modern is based on a shared philosophy of Made for All, a concept reflected in LifeWear , which is clothing designed to help make everyone’s daily life better, and in giving everyone access to the joy of art. I hope many families will participate in the new UNIQLO Tate Play programme.’ 



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