Birth in Los Angeles
Stay in Paris in the studio of Brancusi
Collaboration with choreographer Martha Graham
Akari light sculptures
Tea cup and saucer
Retrospective at the Whitney Museum of American Art.
Death in New York
Isamu Noguchi was born in Los Angeles in 1904 to Yone Noguchi, a Japanese poet, and Léonie Glimour, an American writer. He began his work as a sculptor in Paris in Brancusi's studio, where he met Alberto Giacometti. In 1932, he moved to New York, working mainly as a sculptor but also designing public spaces, furniture and lighting.
His life was then punctuated by travels and creations between Europe, Asia and America. In 1983, he founded a museum of his sculptures on Long Island. Isamu Noguchi died in 1988.
"In 1951, on my way to Hiroshima, where I was to propose the design of two bridges for the Peace Park, I stopped by the city of Gifu to watch the cormorants fishing. The mayor there asked me to help modernise their "chochin", the traditional paper lanterns which had become reduced to cheap party decorations. From that chance visit, was born "Akari" - the Japanese word for light - which has become a distinct art form known around the world.”
The characteristics of Akari are intimately linked to the materials used. Washi paper, made by hand from the inner bark of the mulberry tree, diffuses light in a remarkable way.
Also, the higo, a bamboo frame, can be bent and deformed at will. Fragility and lightness are the inherent qualities of the "Akari" lamps, which seem to unfold and blossom, beyond a material world. The Akari lamps created by Isamu Noguchi between 1951 and 1986 are veritable sculptures of light.
In 1991, Pierre Romanet signed an exclusive distribution and representation agreement for Akari lamps in France with the Noguchi Foundation in New York, marking a decisive step in the company's history.
In 2002 and 2012, Sentou organised two Noguchi exhibitions in its Paris galleries, reissuing many models