Isamu Noguchi



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Current gallery exhibition

This Earth, This Passage

26 May – 1 July 2023
White Cube Mason's Yard

Working across a wide range of disciplines, the bi-racial, multicultural American sculptor Isamu Noguchi (1904–88) developed a uniquely open-ended, ecumenical, forward-looking perspective on global culture. Extending his understanding of the body as a conduit for experience, 'This Earth, This Passage' brings together work from the 1920s to the 1980s in varied materials: bronze, hot-dipped galvanized steel, basalt and granite. The diversity of materials attests to the interdisciplinary nature of the artist's practice, informed by his itinerant travels and belief that art is in a 'constant process of becoming'.

Noguchi shaped himself through diverse, wide-ranging experiences: persistent travel, relationships with many of the most important cultural figures of the 20th century, and work in maker cultures across three continents. He turned his passage through the world into a way of working – seeking universality, accumulating a breadth of awareness and reifying his understandings in a new/old sculpture meant to be of existential use to humanity. Much has been written about Noguchi's role as a bridge between East and West, but what is essential to understand, in the words of his great friend, the futurist R Buckminster Fuller, is that Noguchi purposefully 'to-and-froed' around the globe in order to make the 'eastward and westward extensions' of his 'great back and front yards finally [merge] in world encirclement.'


Past gallery exhibitions