The Isamu Noguchi Foundation and Garden Museum
The Noguchi Museum was founded and designed by Japanese-American artist Isamu Noguchi (1904–1988), one of the most critically acclaimed sculptors of the twentieth century. It was the first U.S. museum to be established by a living artist for the display of his work.
Housed in a converted 1920s industrial building in Long Island City, Queens, the Museum is itself considered to be one of the artist’s greatest achievements. In transforming the former photo-engraving plant into a museum, Noguchi helped to pioneer the metamorphosis of the neighborhood into the vibrant arts center that it is today, home to a range of cultural institutions including Socrates Sculpture Park, MoMA P.S. 1, and SculptureCenter, among others.
The two-story Museum contains approximately 27,000 square feet of exhibition space, and is widely known for its distinctive outdoor sculpture garden. As a whole, it provides an intimate, reflective space in which to experience the range of Noguchi’s work, with a comprehensive selection of sculpture in stone, metal, wood, and clay, as well as drawings, models for public projects and gardens, stage sets, furniture, and his Akari Light Sculptures.
In October 2015, the Museum completed a multi-phase renovation project that has preserved Noguchi’s vision while better enabling the Museum to meet the needs of its growing audiences. The first two phases of work took place between 2002 and 2009, when the Museum completed the renovation of its core facility, and the third focused on the sculpture garden, including replacement of its 30-year-old masonry wall.