In collaboration with Robert Wilson

Jul 1999 - May 2006


This exhibition surveyed the wide spectrum  of Isamu Noguchi’s interdisciplinary oeuvre, spanning from his stage sets, to his stone, wood and metal sculptures, to furniture and light sculptures, and his landscape architecture for parks, fountains, and playgrounds.
It was arranged as a dramatic tour through four staged rooms. The use of sound, diverse display materials and colors created a different atmospheric quality in each room. While the first room was dark and quiet with carefully lit objects, showing set designs and video recordings of the Martha Graham Dance Company. The second room was lit with the soft light of Noguchi’s Akari lamps that helped to establish a more playful mood. In the third room we presented mostly stone sculptures and models of park designs in a setting reminiscent of a Japanese garden. Visitors discovered the pieces by walking on a path of concrete pavers that led through a field of gravel. We also designed a real waterfall with an architectural model in front and a monitor behind it showing the fountain of the Philip A. Hart Plaza in Detroit. The last room possessed an airy quality. All objects were either suspended or stationed on aluminum pedestals that matched the material of the floor.

Organized by the Vitra Design Museum in cooperation with the Isamu Noguchi Foundation, Inc



Project idea: Alexander von Vegesack
Visual concept: Robert Wilson
Curators: Katarina V. Posch, Jochen Eisenbrand
Exhibition design: Robert Wilson in collaboration with Christian Wassmann
Light design: A.J. Weissbard
Sound design: Peter Cerone
Technical supervision: Thomas Schweikert, Thierry Hodel



Isamu Noguchi – Sculptural Design