Isamu Noguchi’s Garden That’s Suspended in Time


WordsManon Baeza


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Isamu Noguchi is one of the most prolific and important sculptors of his time. The Noguchi Garden is the realisation of his dearest wish: to have his own place of inspiration where he could welcome artists and students of all backgrounds. Located in Mure, Japan, the place is like an open-air museum and brings together almost 150 sculptures produced by the artist, some of them unfinished.

Noguchi, who passed away in 1988, is known for his conceptual, modern approach. He was notably behind the Bakelite intercom created for Zenith Radio Corporation in 1937, the sculpture created in 1938 and which appears on the Rockefeller Center building in New York, and the iconic glass coffee table and Akari lamps, which are known worldwide.

Born in 1904 in Los Angeles, Noguchi was the son of Japanese poet Yone Noguchi and American writer Leonie Gilmour. In 1927, he received funding from the Guggenheim Foundation, which would prove a decisive point in his career. He then went to Japan, where he learnt to work with clay under master potter Jinmatsu Uno.

Later, he went on to work in planning and creating outside spaces, producing numerous gardens, squares and sets, which have not ceased to inspire contemporary creation.

The Noguchi Garden preserves the atmosphere that could be found in the sculptor’s workshop. This timeless place holds his archives, which are available for the purposes of scientific research. This poetic, timeless and peaceful garden-museum is not to be missed by sculpture lovers.


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