Noguchi at The Barbican

If you’re in London for Frieze and need some zen time out from the frantic pace, here’s my tip. Go and chill at the Barbican.

The Noguchi show just opened two weeks ago at Barbican Centre and it’s a perfect stroll through the artist and designer’s timeline.

Isamu Noguchi was a sculptor and multidisciplinary designer, creating everything from theatre sets to kids’ playgrounds to furniture and of course, the now-classic Akari lighting. Starting out as an apprentice to Brancusi in Paris, you can see some early influence in his own sculptures (above).

But it’s the design pieces that stand out for me. One of my highlights is the bronze model of an unrealised New York playground called Play Mountain (below). It was designed without apparatus, just sculptural slopes and steps for kids to play in.

On the ground floor level of the show, there’s a wide array of Noguchi’s furniture and product designs, including many iterations of the washi paper lighting. The colourful origami-inspired aluminium tables are another example of everyday design that’s simple and functional, yet a joy to behold.

NOGUCHI is at Barbican Centre, Beech Street, London, EC2Y 8AE until 9th January 2022. Advance booking is essential. See more here.

WORDS: Disneyrollergirl / Navaz Batliwalla
IMAGES: Noguchi by Disneyrollergirl/Navaz Batliwalla
NOTE: Most images are digitally enhanced. Some posts use affiliate links and PR samples. Please read my privacy and cookies policy here

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