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Breaking Barriers: Examining the Life and Work of Isamu Noguchi

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Design +3 Age Levels Middle School (13 to 15 years old), High School (16 to 18 years old)

This topical collection of resources can be used as a brainstorming tool to support student research on the National History Day 2020 theme of Breaking Barriers in History. This collection focuses on primary sources on the life and work of artist and designer Isamu Noguchi.

Isamu Noguchi (November 17, 1904 - December 30, 1988) was a Japanese American artist, landscape architect, and designer. Noted for merging Western and Eastern influence, Noguchi expanded the definition of sculpture with creations that ranged from portraiture and abstract sculpture to graceful meditation gardens and sprawling landscapes. Drawing distinction between art and design, Noguchi also created furniture, theater sets, and other functional objects that demonstrated his desire to incorporate sculpture into daily life. On May 18, 2004, Noguchi was honored by the United States Postal Service with the release of five stamps depicting his work at a ceremony in Long Island City, New York. The selvage (edge of the sheet) also includes a photograph of the artist taken in 1952 and his quote, "Everything is sculpture. Any material, any idea without hindrance born into space, I consider sculpture."

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Tag: Isamu Noguchi, sculpture, sculptor, stamp, design, furniture, World War II, Japanese American

Title Slide

National Postal Museum

Isamu Noguchi

National Portrait Gallery

Early Life & Career

National Postal Museum

Early Life & Career Description

National Postal Museum

Yone Noguchi

Archives of American Art

13c Indiana single

National Postal Museum

3c Mt. Rushmore single

National Postal Museum

3c Abraham Lincoln plate proof

National Postal Museum

The Queen [sculpture] / (photographed by Peter A. Juley & Son)

Archives and Special Collections, Smithsonian American Art Museum

37c Martha Graham single

National Postal Museum

37c R. Buckminster Fuller single

National Postal Museum

Isamu Noguchi

Archives of American Art

Grey Sun

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Isamu Noguchi

National Portrait Gallery

Breaking Barriers: Design

National Postal Museum

Radio Nurse

Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum

42c Eames Storage Unit single

National Postal Museum

IN-50

Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum

86T

Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum

Isamu Noguchi

National Portrait Gallery

Isamu Noguchi, Ariz. letter to Man Ray

Archives of American Art

37c "Rayograph" single

National Postal Museum

Ginger Rogers

National Portrait Gallery

37c Margaret La Farge Osborn single

National Postal Museum

37c Black Sun single

National Postal Museum

37c Mother and Child single

National Postal Museum

37c Figure single

National Postal Museum

37c Akari single

National Postal Museum