A former apprentice to Constantin Brancusi, midcentury master Isamu Noguchi was no stranger to working with metal. The aluminum Prismatic Table (1957), the last piece of furniture that Noguchi designed, is an example of his return to the medium in the 1950s, during which time he created both functional and fine arts objects out of metal sheeting. Evoking the Japanese art of origami, the table features carefully bent and folded angles that lend dimension and a sense of solidity to the design. Small but sturdy, it's a crisp and classic side or end table. This is the first time the three-legged version of the table has been produced, and is artfully manufactured by the Vitra Design Museum in collaboration with the Isamu Noguchi Foundation.
Perhaps more than any other midcentury master, Isamu Noguchi blurred lines between the public and the personal, between art and design. His career was defined by experimenting, learning and creating. "You can find out how to do something and then do it," he said, "or do something and then find out what you did."
Born in Los Angeles to an American mother and Japanese father, Noguchi lived in Japan until the age of 13. While later studying pre-med at Columbia, he took night classes in sculpture and found his true calling. "Everything is sculpture," he asserted. "Any material, any idea without hindrance born into space, I consider sculpture." In 1927, he left for Paris to study with sculptor Constantin Brâncuși for two years, which led him to embrace modernism and abstraction. Read more >