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Martha Graham Dance Company has dazzled for decades. The troupe was founded by the eponymous choreographer and performer whose global impact was so great that she was the first dancer ever to win a Presidential Medal of Freedom.

This month, the ensemble will present for the first time ever at Queens Theatre as part of a jam-packed recently announced season that features various presentations by dance troupes, as well as comedy, Shakespeare by local company Titan Theater, children’s specials and magic. More dance info and images on the jump page.

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Qi Baishi is one of the most influential Chinese ink painters of the 20th century. Isamu Noguchi, who lived in Japan and the United States, was one of the most critically acclaimed sculptors of the same time period. In 1930, Noguchi met Baishi in Beijing, and they spent about six months developing a new vision of abstraction. Baishi fueled Noguchi’s interest in brush and ink on paper, enabling him to develop a new approach to interpreting the human form. Noguchi also discovered that he could create almost life-sized works by painting on a table or floor as per East Asian tradition. Their creative-cultural exchange comes to life in an exhibit that launched yesterday and will remain at The Noguchi Museum until January 26th, 2014. More than 50 drawings, ink paintings, calligraphic works and sculptures by both artists are seen side-by-side for the first time.

Details: Isamu Noguchi and Qi Baishi: Beijing 1930, The Noguchi Museum, 9-01 33rd Road, Long Island City, September 25th, 2013 to January 26th, 2014, click here for admission information.

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As its name suggests, the Noguchi Museum displays sculpture, furniture, ceramics and other pieces by Japanese-American artist Isamu Noguchi. But this weekend, the Long Island City venue dabbles into everything from architecture to film to live music. On September 6th, Noguchi extends evening hours as it always does on the first Friday of each month and offers a pay-what-you-wish admission policy. At 6 pm, the museum facilitates a conversation around a single work of art, followed by a screening of 16 Acres, which explores the Ground Zero rebuilding effort. Presented with the Architecture and Design Film Festival, the movie tells the behind-the-scenes story through a series of first-person narratives, but without any narration. On September 8th, Noguchi hosts the summer’s final Music in the Garden event with Mantra Percussion (above) performing Michael Gordon’s Timber, a full-length concert composed for six percussionists playing on amplified two-by-fours using mallets and fingertips. The concert is offered in collaboration with Bang on a Can/Cantaloupe Music, one of the world’s best recognized ambassador’s of contemporary music.

Details: First Fridays, Noguchi, 9-01 33rd Road, Long Island City, September 6th, 5 pm to 8 pm, pay what you wish.
Bonus details: Music in the Garden, Noguchi, 9-01 33rd Road, LIC, September 8th, 3 pm, free with admission.

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Image Source: Noguchi Sculpture Center

Isamu Noguchi was one of the 20th century’s most prolific and critically acclaimed artists. The LIC resident created sculptures, gardens, furniture, lighting designs, ceramics, architecture and even set designs. The Japanese-American died in 1988, but many of his works are still on display at the Noguchi Sculpture Center across the street from his studio on 33rd Road. Until April 28, the museum is hosting an exhibition, Hammer, Chisel, Drill, that explores Noguchi’s working process through a few studios that he maintained beginning in the 1940s and continuing through the LIC and Mure (Japan) studios where he split his time until his death. The exhibition illuminates Noguchi’s practice during five studio periods over the course of his career. It also considers his time as an assistant in the Paris studio of Constantin Brancusi.

Noguchi Sculpture Museum
9-01 33rd Road, LIC
Through Sunday, April 28
Times vary| Free with admission

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“I am always learning, always discovering.” – Isamu Noguchi

Image source: TF Cornerstone

That philosophy is ever present at the The Noguchi Museum, a beloved museum and store in Long Island City. Located on the corner of Vernon Boulevard and 33rd Road, it features sculpture pieces and well-crafted home furnishings by Isamu Noguchi along with a creative, inspired collection of room accessories and wall hangings.

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Down near the edge of Western Queens, where Astoria meets Long Island City at the waterfront, sits The Noguchi Museum, dedicated to the work of Isamu Noguchi (1904-1988), a major figure of mid-century art and design. His iconic sculptures, akari lamps, and that biomorphic glass coffee table – mere examples from his full œuvre – endure in their influence and significance. And you can take home some of his designed pieces at the The Noguchi Museum Shop.

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The Insider, Brownstoner’s weekly look at how Brooklynites are renovating and decorating their homes, is written and produced by Cara Greenberg, a veteran design journalist and proud Brooklyn resident.

Hard as it may be to believe, ten years ago this immaculate 1873 brownstone on one of Clinton Hill’s most elegant blocks was chopped into six SRO [single room occupancy] units, sharing four kitchens between them. Its wood floors were so grimy no one knew they were parquet. Its imposing arched entry door had cardboard panes instead of glass. The sky was visible through holes in the top-floor ceiling.

When the current owners — a couple with two teenagers, who live on three of the four floors and rent out the garden level — bought the building in 2001 and embarked on a renovation, the house more than met them halfway. Behind the jerry-rigged kitchens, original detail lurked. The plaster crown moldings and hefty stair balusters were all there — in need of repair, but basically intact. Seven marble fireplace mantels remained. In the basement, they found all the house’s original panel doors. With the help of a master carpenter, plasterers, and other tradespeople, they put it all back together again.

The eclectic furnishings, strong on 20th century modernism, demonstrate how sympathetically clean-lined modern design can work against the more ornate splendors of 19th century row house architecture. Turkish rugs, African artifacts, found objects, and contemporary artworks round out the decor, making for a unique and lively mix.

Lots more photos and details on the jump.

Photos: Cara Greenberg