UPDATE: The Hirshhorn has clarified media reports on the incident, asserting that the monetary comparison is inaccurate. The comparable gourd was a standalone piece of artwork with a pricetag of $784,485, whereas the pieces in the Infinity Mirrors exhibit hold no intrinsic value by themselves. The Hirshhorn confirms that the exhibit remains intact while the individual element undergoes conservation.
There’s a time and a place to take a well-crafted selfie. “While toppling over onto a very expensive piece of art” is neither of those things.
It took all of a week for someone to go absolutely bung at the brand new Yayoi Kusama exhibition at Washington D.C.’s Hirshhorn Museum.
The exhibition, entitled ‘Infinity Mirrors,’ features a series of rooms with wall-to-wall mirrors, one of which is stocked to the gills with ornate glass pumpkins, providing exhibition punters with a fairly prime Instagram opportunity (a deliberately intended one, mind you).
In this particular room – which carries the frankly heartwarming title of ‘All the Eternal Love I Have for Pumpkins‘ – 3 visitors at a time are allowed inside the room, with the door closed and no security present inside, for 30 seconds.
Which makes it all the more curious that in one of those periods over the course of last weekend someone apparently managed to come an absolute cropper, damaging one of the pumpkins in the process.
The museum has absolutely no idea what happened, and the person responsible have not been identified. The New York Times reports that the stumbler was alone in the room at the time of the incident. Museum spokespeople confirmed the exhibit had been temporarily closed while the damage was assessed. A similar gourd sculpture sold in 2015 for a whopping US$800,000, so sourcing a replacement isn’t exactly an easy task.
For the record, the fancy pumpkins look a little like this.
The installation sports a narrow walkway with low, transparent barriers, which is speculated to be the cause of the artful dodger’s wee snafu.
The exhibition reopened earlier today. Around 8,000 people viewed the exhibition over the weekend, making it the museum’s most popular by some margin.
Now then. Do we close out this article by posting a Homer Simpson/Smashing Pumpkins GIF? Or do we go with a David Pumpkins reference?
We’re doing both.
Source: The Washington Post.
Photo: The Washington Post/Getty.