In a rare instance of an artist’s estate leaving one top gallery for another, Isamu Noguchi has departed Pace Gallery, which had shown the artist since the 1970s, and joined the roster of White Cube, which has spaces in London and Hong Kong. The Isamu Noguchi Foundation and Garden Museum in New York will oversee the representation in collaboration with White Cube, whose roster also includes artists such as Damien Hirst, Danh Vo, and Theaster Gates.
Jay Jopling, the founder and chief executive of White Cube, said in a statement, “Isamu Noguchi’s extraordinary oeuvre places him among the masters of Modern sculpture.”
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White Cube will show Noguchi’s sculptures and designs at this year’s edition of Art Basel Hong Kong, set to run from May 21–23. A two-person exhibition with Antony Gormley at White Cube’s pop-up space in Aspen, Colorado, in August. The artist’s first solo show with White Cube will take place in February 2022 in London.
Noguchi produced a prolific body of work that spanned—and often blurred the lines between—art, design, and architecture. His furniture, ceramics, lighting, sculptures, and gardens reflect a keen attention to nature and space.
Born in Los Angeles in 1904 to an American mother and Japanese father, Noguchi’s negotiation of these two cultures was a driving force of his art and activism. In 1942, Noguchi voluntarily entered the Poston internment camp in the Arizona desert. “Thus, I willfully became part of humanity uprooted,” Noguchi wrote in his 1968 memoir. He arrived with ambitious designs aimed to improve living conditions for the interned at Poston, including a botanical garden and a zoo.
In 1985, Noguchi opened the Isamu Noguchi Garden Museum, renamed the Noguchi Museum, in Queens, New York. After Noguchi died in 1988, his studio in Mure, a small town in Japan famous for its stone masonry, was opened to the public. In 2020, a sculpture by Noguchi became the first work by an Asian American artist to enter the White House collection.