Yayoi Kusama

Red, white and instantly recognisable: the highest-earning living female artist

The global domination of eighty-seven-year-old Kusama’s touring, Instagram-friendly brand of immersive Infinity Mirror Room installations, spotty pumpkin sculptures, floating steel spheres and minimalist, repeat-motif Infinity Net paintings has continued in 2016 and shows no sign of slowing down. Institutional exhibitions this year were accorded to her by the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, the Glass House, Connecticut, Helsinki Art Museum and the Sharjah Art Foundation. Kusama’s 2016 exhibition at Victoria Miro gallery in London attracted nearly 69,000 visitors, most of whom had to queue. Though Kusama still ranks as the highest-selling living female artist, she isn’t just about the figures – audience or price. She also comes with a pedigree of film and orchestrated happenings and performance in New York during the 1960s and 70s that was every bit as avant-garde as Warhol.