Hi, my name is Hijiri, I am a freelance graphic and web designer in NYC, and I have a design blog called Heart Fish where I share about my daily inspiration on art, graphic design, typography, letterpress printing (I have a little giveaway going on right now if you are interested), NYC, and everything between. You might remember me from her "Friends & Neighbors" post a while back and I am oh so honored to be here as a guest today and also, to be a part of this incredible guest blogger line up! Thank you, Victoria and nice to meet you all sfgirlbybay readers! I hope you enjoy my posts today and next Wednesday!
While Victoria is in Thailand, riding on elephants (she told me so), today, I am taking you all to Asia as well... to Japan! I am originally from there and so I try to go back there once a year to see my family and friends and during the last trip I took back in June, I went to the Isamu Noguchi Garden Museum Japan and that was one of the best museums I've ever visited so I wanted to share a little bit about it here today.
It might be really hard to visit there even if you live in Japan because it is far from big city like Tokyo or Osaka, it is located in Mure-cho, Kagawa prefecture (my hometown is Takamatsu, Kagawa) and you need to make an appointment (it is by appointment only) 2 weeks prior to the day you'd like to visit with a return postcard. They will then return the postcard with your approved appointment date and time and you have to bring the postcard with you when you visit. (I guess if you don't live in Japan, you can email or fax to make an appointment) My mom lives there for her entire life, we had map, but we almost got lost trying to find the museum because the road was narrow and it was so hard to find it. So yes, it might be very hard place to visit, but if you ever have a chance, I highly recommend visiting there. You will be amazed!
The reception area:
Inside, you can purchase Noguchi lamps, books, his biography videos, and you can see some old press newspapers and magazines, too.
Outside of the reception area:
It was actually pouring, but the rocks look different on rain and it was shiny and beautiful.
The gate. By Isamu Noguchi. The tour starts from here. (A tour guide will come get you when it's time, and you will be shown around with guide)
It is strictly NO picture or recording inside so there is no picture to share from inside the garden museum, but the first half of the tour, you get to see his work space, stone circle, hundreds of unfinished work and finished work, all layed out by Isamu Noguchi – it takes your breath away. Simply amazing.
(pictures are from the Isamu Noguchi Garden Museum Japan website)
The second half of the tour, you are introduced to his private home and garden where he spent half of his time a year between his New York home. He designed everything from interiors, lighting (Noguchi lamps were layed out very nicely throughout the house), spaces, he loved Japanese old house structure so he kept the basic, but he turned it into his own amazing space – you can only "peek" through the window, but still it was worth peeking!
Also, outside, he designed a whole garden to himself, he carved the hill so it was rounded, when you get up to the top, you can see the beautiful mountain views that he loved, he designed a river by using smaller rocks to bigger rocks to show the movement..... I know it's hard to describe everything without showing it, but I was WOWed the whole time, but very calm way. It was almost like a meditation experience. Very inspiring. I felt his love and passion, too.
This area is known to be a "stone/rock" town and you see it everywhere around here. Here are some pictures I took on the way back.
Isamu Noguchi Garden Museum Japan
3519 Mure, Mure-cho, Takamatsu-shi, Kagawa-Ken, 761-0121 Japan
Phone +81 87 870 1500
Facsimile +81 87 845 0505