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Isamu Noguchi, Archaic/Modern

Published by GILES in association with the Smithsonian American Art Museum

Add to Cart US$44.95

Published — (UK and USA)

Dimensions — 128 pages, 279 x 216 mm (8 ½ x 11 in)

Illustrations — 110 colour

Format — Hardback

Price — UK£29.99 / US$44.95

ISBN — 978-1-911282-04-4

Press Release — The first full-scale exploration of how the...

News  —  Curator Talk with Dakin Hart

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A critical look at some of Noguchi’s lesser known works which had a massive influence on both art and design.

The first full-scale exploration of  how the ancient world shaped this artist’s innovative vision for the future.

Integrates art and design seamlessly in a way that makes Noguchi the avatar he deserves to be for the multi-disciplinary way artists and designers work today.

About the Book

American/Japanese artist Isamu Noguchi (1904-1988) is best known — to the point of stereotyping — as a synthesizer of East and West. As an artist, designer and inventor he created many remarkable objects, both decorative and functional, which express the tensions between the ancient past and the future. Many of his works were far ahead of his time. His design for Sculpture to Be Seen from Mars (1947) so enormous that it would be visible from Mars, anticipates the space age by several decades. Yet Noguchi frequently found inspiration in ancient art and architecture, from Egyptian pyramids, to Buddhist temples and Zen gardens, to American Indian burial mounds.

Isamu Noguchi, Archaic/Modern brings together more than eighty works, nearly all from The Noguchi Museum, made over six decades. Featured works include several monolithic basalt sculptures, fountains, and floating Akari ceiling lights from the 1950s, as well as works that use stone, water, and light to evoke nature and call to mind elemental structures in civilization across time. Noguchi saw himself as equal parts artist and engineer and this volume devotes special attention to his 13 patented designs, such as Radio Nurse— the Bakelite housing for the first baby monitor for Zenith, and also includes his designs for stage sets, playgrounds, and utilitarian articles, many of which are still being produced today. 

About the Author(s)

Dakin Hart is senior curator at The Noguchi Museum. He was educated at Georgetown University and the Institute of Fine Arts, NYU. He is the author of Museum of Stones: Ancient and Contemporary Art at The Noguchi Museum (2016), Dance: American Art, 1830-1960 (2016) and Mark Grotjahn: Masks (2015).