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  • Isamu Noguchi

    United States

    Art Brokerage: Isamu Noguchi American Artist: b. 1904-1988. Isamu Noguchi was born November 17, 1904, in Los Angeles. His Japanese father was a poet and his mother an American writer. In 1906, the family moved to Japan. He was sent to Indiana for schooling in 1918, and in 1922 he apprenticed to the sculptor Gutzon Borglum in Connecticut. For the next two years, he was a premedical student at Columbia University, New York, and took sculpture classes at the Leonardo da Vinci School, also in New York. Noguchi decided to become an artist and left Columbia in 1925. A John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation fellowship in 1927 enabled him to go to Paris, where he worked as Constantin Brancusi's studio assistant. In Paris, he became friendly with Alexander Calder, Stuart Davis, and Jules Pascin. Noguchi returned to New York in 1928 and the following year showed abstract sculpture in his first solo show at the Eugene Schoen Gallery. In 1930, Noguchi traveled in Europe and Asia, studying calligraphy in China and pottery in Japan. In New York during the early 1930s, he associated with Arshile Gorky, John Graham, Chaim Gross, and Moses and Raphael Soyer and introduced social content into his work. He began to design playgrounds, furniture, and theater decor, executing the first of numerous sets for Martha Graham. Noguchi spent six months in a Japanese-American relocation camp. In 1949, he was given a solo show at the Egan Gallery, New York. In Japan in 1950 -51, he designed gardens, bridges, and monuments and developed his paper lanterns (akari). He showed at the Stable Gallery, New York, in 1954 and 1959. In 1961, Noguchi moved to Long Island City. Noguchi's first solo exhibition in Paris was held at the Galerie Claude Bernard in 1964. The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, honored him with a major retrospective in 1968. Throughout the 1970s, Noguchi continued to make large outdoor sculpture and fountains. A comprehensive show of his sculpture, theater sets, and environmental works took place in 1978 at the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis. Listings wanted.

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