This handmade book collects one of Isamu Noguchi’s last and most essential interviews, along with fourteen photographs from The Noguchi Museum Archives.
In 1988, his last year on earth, Noguchi spoke with artist Rhony Alhalel on several occasions in Japan, expressing deep bitterness about the commercialization of art and the desecration of beautiful places and sacred things. Their dialogue is a love letter to Kyoto, and, as Noguchi’s final published interview, it contains some of his parting words. Stating, “Art for me is something which teaches human beings how to become more human,” he offers ideas on how to proceed in a world of conflict.
The text was originally published in Kyoto Journal 10, Spring 1989. This edition was designed and published in collaboration with artist Jon Beacham of The Brother In Elysium, who printed and bound it by hand. The materials from the Archives include photographs taken by Noguchi in Japan and images of his sculpture and gardens by Iwan Baan, Shigeo Anzai, and others.
The book is hand set in metal foundry type – Aldus and Palatino, cast by Rainer Gerstenberg in Frankfurt, Germany – and printed letterpress. Hand sewn and laid into a letterpress printed dust jacket with two paste-down images. Photographs printed color offset. Edition of 400.
Text: Rhony Alhalel, Isamu Noguchi
Published by The Isamu Noguchi Foundation and Garden Museum, New York / The Brother In Elysium, Holyoke, MA, 2022
Softcover, with letterpress dustjacket with B&W paste-down images.
36 pages, 6 x 9.25 inches.