Art, Guest Bloggers
Oct 01, 2013

Currently on Exhibit at The Noguchi Museum: Noguchi with Qi Baishi, and Ruth Page

Currently on exhibit at the Noguchi Museum are two new shows, “Isamu Noguchi and Qi Baishi: Beijing 1930,” and “Space Choreographed: Noguchi and Ruth Page.”

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On September 25, 2013, the Noguchi Museum in Long Island City opened a new exhibit, Isamu Noguchi and Qi Baishi: Beijing 1930. Organized by the University of Michigan Museum of Art (UMMA) including pieces from the both the UMMA and Noguchi Museum collections, the exhibit examines the works of China’s Qi Baishi and his influence on Noguchi during his formative years as an artist.

After spending time in Paris working with Constantin Brancusi, Noguchi was introduced to Qi Baishi in China. Much older and established as an artist, Noguchi studied under the Chinese master for six months. Known as “China’s Picasso,” self-taught Qi Baishi was known for eschewing traditional literati subjects such as bamboo and landscapes for animals and scenes more common to farming, painted sparingly in innovative compositions.


The younger Noguchi, breaking free from the shadow of Brancusi, embraced the Chinese brushwork to create gestural, abstract nudes. The exhibit places their works together in a thoughtful comparison of their respective works. Around 50 paintings and sculptures from both artists are included in the show, which is the only East Coast opportunity to see the exhibition, open through January 26, 2014.

In another gallery, Noguchi’s next steps collaborating with the revolutionary dancer Ruth Page in the United States are chronicled in Space Choreographed: Noguchi and Ruth Page, highlighting drawings made by Noguchi of Ruth Page in a sack dress of his design. Complementing the exhibits are a series of workshops, films and panel discussions taking places at the Noguchi Museum, including a workshop on November 9 for adults teaching Chinese in painting materials and techniques, and evening film programs on First Fridays.

The Noguchi Museum is located in Long Island City at 9-01 33rd Road, across the street from Socrates Sculpture Park. Some programs listed here require advance registration or ticketing, so check their website for specific information.

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