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11 Times Noguchi Lamps Stole the Spotlight, Plus 5 to Buy

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11 Times Noguchi Lamps Stole the Spotlight, Plus 5 to Buy

June 7, 2019

We are great admirers of Noguchi lamps for their delicate beauty and powerful simplicity. Quite a few of us here on staff, in fact, have at least one of the iconic Japanese midcentury lights in our homes.

Of course, we’re not the only ones captivated by the rice-paper light sculptures. Architects and design-minded creatives have long turned to Noguchi lamps to finish a room. Here are 10 examples from our archives. And be sure to scroll down to the end for five our favorites to buy.

An Akari Ceiling Lamp, Model L5 from the Noguchi Museum Store hangs in the lofty living area of this Brooklyn apartment. Photograph by Bruce Buck, from An Eclectic Apartment Inspired by Japanese Storage Chests in Cobble Hill, Brooklyn.
Above: An Akari Ceiling Lamp, Model L5 from the Noguchi Museum Store hangs in the lofty living area of this Brooklyn apartment. Photograph by Bruce Buck, from An Eclectic Apartment Inspired by Japanese Storage Chests in Cobble Hill, Brooklyn.
Architect Jess Thomas chose a Noguchi ceiling light for her own living room. Photograph by and courtesy of Kate Sears; styling by Kate S. Jordan, from The Sentimental Minimalist: A Young Architect’s Bed-Stuy Townhouse Makeover.
Above: Architect Jess Thomas chose a Noguchi ceiling light for her own living room. Photograph by and courtesy of Kate Sears; styling by Kate S. Jordan, from The Sentimental Minimalist: A Young Architect’s Bed-Stuy Townhouse Makeover.
A pair of Noguchi lanterns illuminates the space. Photograph by Richard Powers, from A Modernist Vacation Retreat in Australia, Rental Edition.
Above: A pair of Noguchi lanterns illuminates the space. Photograph by Richard Powers, from A Modernist Vacation Retreat in Australia, Rental Edition.
A Noguchi Floor Lamp Model 10A anchors a corner in the lobby of a Malibu inn. Photograph by Laure Joliet, from Hollywood-Style Zen in Malibu: Nobu Ryokan Guesthouse on Carbon Beach.
Above: A Noguchi Floor Lamp Model 10A anchors a corner in the lobby of a Malibu inn. Photograph by Laure Joliet, from Hollywood-Style Zen in Malibu: Nobu Ryokan Guesthouse on Carbon Beach.
Jewelry designer Kathleen Whitaker upgraded her Noguchi pendant light with a cloth-covered cord and a brass ceiling plate. Photograph by Laure Joliet, from Shift to Neutral: LA Jewelry Designer Kathleen Whitaker’s Radical Transformation.
Above: Jewelry designer Kathleen Whitaker upgraded her Noguchi pendant light with a cloth-covered cord and a brass ceiling plate. Photograph by Laure Joliet, from Shift to Neutral: LA Jewelry Designer Kathleen Whitaker’s Radical Transformation.
Above: Various Noguchi ceiling light designs hover over this museum restaurant in Copenhagen. See Kafeteria and Kunst: A New Copenhagen Cafe by Frederik Bille Brahe and Danh Vo.
Noguchi lights are arresting enough to hold center court in public spaces—yet understated and intimate enough for bedrooms, like this one. Photograph by Kate Sears; styling by Kate S. Jordan, from The Sentimental Minimalist: A Young Architect’s Bed-Stuy Townhouse Makeover.
Above: Noguchi lights are arresting enough to hold center court in public spaces—yet understated and intimate enough for bedrooms, like this one. Photograph by Kate Sears; styling by Kate S. Jordan, from The Sentimental Minimalist: A Young Architect’s Bed-Stuy Townhouse Makeover.
A galaxy of trend-resistent Noguchi lanterns illuminates the dining area of Manufactory. Photograph by Mariko Reed, from 7 Ideas to Steal from the Manufactory in SF by Commune Design.
Above: A galaxy of trend-resistent Noguchi lanterns illuminates the dining area of Manufactory. Photograph by Mariko Reed, from 7 Ideas to Steal from the Manufactory in SF by Commune Design.
A mini Noguchi elevates the kitchen scene at an architecture firm. Photograph by Matthew Williams for Remodelista, from A Tree Grows in Brooklyn: Fabr Studio in East Williamsburg.
Above: A mini Noguchi elevates the kitchen scene at an architecture firm. Photograph by Matthew Williams for Remodelista, from A Tree Grows in Brooklyn: Fabr Studio in East Williamsburg.
A Noguchi ceiling light both  highlights the humble materials used in this tiny plywood-lined beach house. Photograph by Marcia Mihotich, from Two London Creatives Shore Up a Tiny Beach House, Ikea Hack Kitchen Included.
Above: A Noguchi ceiling light both  highlights the humble materials used in this tiny plywood-lined beach house. Photograph by Marcia Mihotich, from Two London Creatives Shore Up a Tiny Beach House, Ikea Hack Kitchen Included.
A Noguchi table light placed on the floor is an unexpected touch. Photograph by Richard Round-Turner, courtesy of Lisa Jones, from A Star Is Born: A Rehabbed London Maisonette from a Newly Minted Designer, High/Low Secrets Included.
Above: A Noguchi table light placed on the floor is an unexpected touch. Photograph by Richard Round-Turner, courtesy of Lisa Jones, from A Star Is Born: A Rehabbed London Maisonette from a Newly Minted Designer, High/Low Secrets Included.

Five to Buy

The Globe Akari Lantern is available in five sizes ranging from 12 by 12 inch ($200) to 47 by 46 inch ($1,800), from the Noguchi Museum, in Long Island City, New York, which carries the full line of Akari designs. Note that because the designs ship flat, basic assembly is required.
Above: The Globe Akari Lantern is available in five sizes ranging from 12 by 12 inch ($200) to 47 by 46 inch ($1,800), from the Noguchi Museum, in Long Island City, New York, which carries the full line of Akari designs. Note that because the designs ship flat, basic assembly is required.
Noguchi light sculptures feature handmade washi paper and bamboo ribbing, supported by a metal frame. The Akari Table Light Model 1A measures 10 by 17 inches; $175 at the Noguchi Museum.
Above: Noguchi light sculptures feature handmade washi paper and bamboo ribbing, supported by a metal frame. The Akari Table Light Model 1A measures 10 by 17 inches; $175 at the Noguchi Museum.
Akari means “brightness” in Japanese. The Oblong Akari Ceiling Light is available in three sizes; $200 to $900 at the Noguchi Museum.
Above: Akari means “brightness” in Japanese. The Oblong Akari Ceiling Light is available in three sizes; $200 to $900 at the Noguchi Museum.
The Noguchi Lamp 3A is 22 inches tall and 11 inches wide; it’s available at Surrounding for $275.
Above: The Noguchi Lamp 3A is 22 inches tall and 11 inches wide; it’s available at Surrounding for $275.
The Akari Floor Lamp UF3-Q measures 57 by 22 inches; $525 at Surrounding.
Above: The Akari Floor Lamp UF3-Q measures 57 by 22 inches; $525 at Surrounding.

For more on Noguchi, see:

For more lighting ideas, see:

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