Past Exhibitions


View photographs and learn more about past exhibitions at The Noguchi Museum and other institutions around the world.

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Civic Action: A Vision for Long Island City
Thursday, October 13, 2011 - Sunday, April 22, 2012

Home to The Noguchi Museum and Socrates Sculpture Park, the Queens community where northern Long Island City and Astoria converge is a textured, mixed industrial and residential community.  A resident since 1960, Isamu Noguchi was joined in the neighborhood by fellow artist and sculptor Mark di Suvero ten years later.  Throughout his career, Isamu Noguchi collaborated with many architects, designers and civic thinkers on various public projects and in 1985, realized his vision of a single artist museum in Long Island City.  One year later, di Suvero established neighboring Socrates Sculpture Park as an ongoing laboratory for art.  More than 25 years later, the realized visions of these two renowned artists--and the spaces they transformed--have brought international attention to the area.  

In response to this neighborhood, now undergoing significant change, The Noguchi Museum and Socrates Sculpture Park have forged an alliance through Civic Action: A Vision for Long Island City.  Four artists known for their work in the public sphere were invited to form individual teams featuring an architect or planner to conceive new approaches to development in this area of Long Island City that Noguchi and di Suvero helped to shape.  Artists Natalie Jeremijenko, Mary Miss, Rirkrit Tiravanija and George Trakas have explored visionary scenarios that would enable the community to continue to coexist alongside the light manufacturing and residential communities inherent to the area.  The outcome of this eight month process will be displayed at The Noguchi Museum through April 22, 2012.  Further realized components of each team’s proposals will be exhibited at Socrates Sculpture Park in May 2012.  

For videos about Civic Action, see

Tracks: Animal Drawings from Noguchi's Travels
Wednesday, May 25, 2011 - Sunday, September 18, 2011

Despite an enduring reputation as an artist interested in abstraction and spatial concerns, Noguchi avidly explored figuration and it informed much of his work.   During his travels from the 1920s through the 1950s, Noguchi's many drawings serve as a record of his daily life abroad, and his sketchbook renderings of animals form a particularly rich area of focus.  Some 40 of Noguchi's concise ink and pencil drawings, showing a masterly fluidity and improvisational sense, capture animals as part of city scenes, as architectural details, and in some instances, are placed side by side with studies for his abstract sculpture.

Highlights from the Collection
Wednesday, May 25, 2011 - Sunday, September 18, 2011

Complimenting the Noguchi Museum's permanently installed lower levels, selections from the Museum's Collections, including examples of Noguchi's steel sculptures and a number of collaborative stage sets, are now on view in the upstairs galleries.

Isamu Noguchi at the Philadelphia Museum of Art
Tuesday, September 7, 2010 - Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The Noguchi Museum has loaned artworks to the Philadelphia Museum of Art for the inaugural exhibition in its new landscaped sculpture garden overlooking Boathouse Row on the Schuylkyll River. The loan honors the PMA's late Director, Anne d'Harnoncourt, who was a great supporter and advocate of Noguchi's work since her early years as a curator at the Museum.

Learn more from the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

On Becoming an Artist: Isamu Noguchi and his Contemporaries, 1922-1960
Wednesday, November 17, 2010 - Sunday, April 24, 2011

Organized by independent curator Amy Wolf, this exhibition presents a comprehensive survey of Isamu Noguchi’s most important artistic relationships with influential figures in art, dance, architecture and design. These friendships and collaborations include: Arshile Gorky, Alexander Calder, Constantin Brancusi, Berenice Abbott, Frida Kahlo, Merce Cunningham, Martha Graham, Louis Kahn, and many others. The exhibition encompasses Noguchi’s formative experiences with sculptors Gutzon Borglum and Onorio Ruotolo, his Guggenheim Fellowship in Paris in the late 1920s, an important early commission in Mexico City, design work in theatre and with industrial designers George Nelson and Florence Knoll in the 1940s and -50s, and concludes with Noguchi’s five-year collaborative project (unrealized) with architect Louis Kahn to build a playground in New York City. In addition to pivotal works by Noguchi, the exhibition illuminates his relationships through personal photographs, exhibition-related ephemera and correspondence from The Noguchi Museum Archive, as well as sculptures, paintings and drawings by those who influenced his artistic practice. On Becoming an Artist coincides with the 25th anniversary year of The Noguchi Museum.

On Becoming an Artist: Isamu Noguchi and His Contemporaries, 1922-1960 is generously supported by Malcolm and Jennifer Nolen, Knoll, the Robert Lehman Foundation and, in part, with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs and New York State Council on the Arts. The Museum also gratefully acknowledges the support of AXA Art Insurance Corporation and DeWitt Stern, Insurance and Risk Advisory.

Highlights from the Collection
Wednesday, November 17, 2010 - Sunday, April 24, 2011

Complimenting the Museum’s permanently installed lower levels, selections from the Museum’s Permanent Collection are now on view in the upstairs galleries.  Artworks featured include select Paris Abstractions, interlocking sculptures, Peking Brush Drawings, and cast bronzes.