Hirshhorn Welcomes 14,000 Visitors to “Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors” During Record-Setting First Week

Museum Announces New Late Hours and Additional Walk-Up Passes
March 6, 2017
News Release
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Woman lying amid red and white dots in mirrored room

The Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden welcomed more than 14,000 visitors through the free special exhibition “Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors” during its first week on view (Feb. 23–March 1). This period also saw a record-setting 32,500 visitors to the museum and sculpture garden, its highest attendance for those dates in almost 40 years.

“The public’s remarkable enthusiasm for ‘Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors’ is thrilling and gratifying,” said Hirshhorn Deputy Director Elizabeth Duggal. “This is the first exhibition to feature six of Kusama’s iconic Infinity Mirror Rooms, and we are constantly monitoring and improving the experience to offer visitors a remarkable journey through Kusama’s world.”

In response to the extraordinary interest, the Hirshhorn is offering extended hours, adjusting the availability of free timed passes and improving visitor flow.

Extended Hours

  • To increase availability for the public, the museum is extending hours for the exhibition starting Wednesday, March 22. Every Wednesday through May 3, the gallery will stay open until 8 p.m., with final timed-pass entry at 6:30 p.m.

Free Timed Passes

  • On Monday, March 6, more than 9,000 free advance timed passes will be released for the dates March 14–20.
  • Starting Tuesday, March 7, the Hirshhorn is increasing the number of free walk-up timed passes for same-day visits, in response to visitor demand.  
  • Advance timed passes are released online every Monday at noon for the following week. Each day, walk-up timed passes are available at the museum for same-day visits, with lines forming at 9:30 a.m. Passes are offered beginning at 10 a.m. for times throughout the day, while supplies last.  

There has been unprecedented demand for advance timed passes when they are released, with more than 58,000 users requesting passes within the first minute this past Monday. Security systems prevent web robots, or bots, from claiming passes when they are released online. The museum is also working directly with resale platforms to prevent the resale of free timed passes.

Visitor Improvements

  • The museum is also shortening wait times to enter “Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors” by reducing visitors per hour starting Tuesday, March 7.
  • Other improvements include increased staffing, wayfinding and clearer directional signage. 

About the Hirshhorn

The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden is the national museum of modern and contemporary art and a leading voice for 21st-century art and culture. Part of the Smithsonian, the Hirshhorn is located prominently on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. With nearly 12,000 paintings, sculptures, photographs, mixed-media installations, works on paper and new media works, its holdings encompass one of the most important collections of postwar American and European art in the world. The Hirshhorn presents diverse exhibitions and offers an array of public programs on the art of our time—free to all, 364 days a year. For more information, visit hirshhorn.si.edu.

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