by Wendy Giman, 12/18/2013
Photo: George Hirose
The Noguchi Museum
9-01 33rd Rd. (at Vernon Blvd.), 718-204-7088, Long Island City, Queens
Despite sitting across from a bustling Costco center, the Noguchi Museum offers visitors an immediate sense of serenity and calm. The former factory building was converted into a museum and interior garden in 1985 by artist Isamu Noguchi, whose studio was based across the street since the 1960s to be close to Long Island City's stone works and metal fabricators—the ingredients for many of his pieces. The 27,000-square-foot design offers generously spaced art from the artist's personal collection of his own work. Noguchi's career touched on every possible aspect of creative expression, from sculpture and Martha Graham sets to designing an early version of a baby monitor called Night Nurse in 1937. The experience is a delightful and soothing balance of light, metal, stone, wood, air and most of all, beauty. His work spans the globe from Philadelphia to Hiroshima, Japan. Here you only have to take a subway ride (or walk) to be able to contemplate the artist's unique and thought-provoking designs.