The Life of Isamu Noguchi: Journey without Borders by Masayo DuusThe Life of Isamu Noguchi: Journey without Borders by Masayo Duus

The Life of Isamu Noguchi: Journey without Borders

byMasayo Duus

Paperback | November 5, 2006

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Isamu Noguchi, born in Los Angeles as the illegitimate son of an American mother and a Japanese poet father, was one of the most prolific yet enigmatic figures in the history of twentieth-century American art. Throughout his life, Noguchi (1904-1988) grappled with the ambiguity of his identity as an artist caught up in two cultures.

His personal struggles--as well as his many personal triumphs--are vividly chronicled inThe Life of Isamu Noguchi, the first full-length biography of this remarkable artist. Published in connection with the centennial of the artist's birth, the book draws on Noguchi's letters, his reminiscences, and interviews with his friends and colleagues to cast new light on his youth, his creativity, and his relationships.

During his sixty-year career, there was hardly a genre that Noguchi failed to explore. He produced more than 2,500 works of sculpture, designed furniture, lamps, and stage sets, created dramatic public gardens all over the world, and pioneered the development of environmental art. After studying in Paris, where he befriended Alexander Calder and worked as an assistant to Constantin Brancusi, he became an ardent advocate for abstract sculpture.

Noguchi's private life was no less passionate than his artistic career. The book describes his romances with many women, among them the dancer Ruth Page, the painter Frida Kahlo, and the writer Anaïs Nin.

Despite his fame, Noguchi always felt himself an outsider. "With my double nationality and my double upbringing, where was my home?" he once wrote. "Where were my affections? Where my identity?" Never entirely comfortable in the New York art world, he inevitably returned to his father's homeland, where he had spent a troubled childhood. This prize-winning biography, first published in Japanese, traces Isamu Noguchi's lifelong journey across these artistic and cultural borders in search of his personal identity.

Masayo Duus, a prize-winning author in Japan, has lived in the United States since 1964 and has written widely on the history of Japanese Americans. Among her other works translated into English areTokyo Rose: Orphan of the Pacific, Unlikely Liberators: The Men of the 100th and 442nd,andThe Japanese Conspiracy: The Oahu Sugar Strike of...
Title:The Life of Isamu Noguchi: Journey without BordersFormat:PaperbackDimensions:440 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.68 inPublished:November 5, 2006Publisher:Princeton University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0691127824

ISBN - 13:9780691127828

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Table of Contents

Prologue 6

Chapter One: Yone and Leonie 11

Chapter Two: His Mother's Child 33

Chapter Three: All-American Boy 77

Chapter Four: Journey of Self-Discovery 111

Chapter Five: Becoming a Nisei 149

Chapter Six: The Song of a Small 177

Chapter Seven: Honeymoon with Japan 205

Chapter Eight: The World of Dreams 239

Chapter Nine: The Universe in a Garden 273

Chapter Ten: Encounter with a Stonecutter 311

Chapter Eleven: Farewell to s Dreamer 349

Epilogue 390

Notes 397

Bibliography 420

Acknowledgments 428

Index 430

Photgraphy Credits 439

Editorial Reviews

"Masayo Duss's recent biography of the artist is a refreshing change of pace. Duus highlights the diversity of Noguchi's life and artistic experience while refraining, for the most part, from pigeonholing him as an artist whose work reflects an essentially Japanese aesthetic. . . . [S]he seems to think . . . that Noguchi's unwavering commitment to artistic experimentation and a diversity of viewpoints and his unwillingness to be pinned down as an artist are what make his work and his life so compelling."--Amy Lyford, Art Journal