Asuka Nirasawa

Artist's biography

Born and raised in Osaka, Japan, Asuka Nirasawa has studied fine art at Tokyo University of The Arts. She has lived in India and participated in several artist residency programmes in Europe and South Africa. Her travels between divergent countries opened her creative mind wider and deeper and has been an immense source of inspiration for her paintings, drawings, photographic collages, video installations and graphics. She currently lives and works in South Africa and Japan.


In her works, she endeavours to expose the obscure parts of reality:  in daily life we seldom consider reality beyond our senses and general cognition. We are unfamiliar with the complex mechanisms, forms and colours of particles and cells in the microscopic world and in the universe generally. Expressing and sensing this separate reality helps us escape from the threat of boredom in a comparatively colourless world. She is fascinated by images of human and animal anatomy, especially at a microscopic level. It is rich in colour and form; seemingly fantastic at first glance, but ultimately ruthlessly practical and designed for uncompromising efficiency. This world seems mystical at first, but these biological systems are designed with the single purpose of converting matter into energy, obeying the irresistible inclination of the universe to chaos. We invent large parts of our life simply to avoid self-reflection – missing life in the process.


The dynamics of modernity (sophistication) and primitiveness (savagery) stir her imagination. She continues to experiment with drawings, paintings and photographic collages. In her works, one finds a mix of the modern, traditional and pop culture worlds in vivid, eccentric and infinite colours. Her process seeks to create art to express a tangible version of her thoughts and emotions, often involving moving back and forth between the conscious and sub-conscious. She is always in the process of finding such a transcendental moment.

List of exhibitions… “BEING” solo show @Eclectica contemporary, Capetown, South Africa, “MULTIFINITY” solo show @David Krut Project Capetown, South Africa (2017),  “ORIGIN” solo show @Gallery Nomart, Osaka, Japan (2017), Open studio showcase @bagfactory, Johanessburg, South Africa (2016), Open studio showcase @Arteles creative center, Haukijärvi, Finland (2016), “TRANS_formation_migration” solo show @gallery Five Forty Five, Bangalore, India (2013)

Portfolio & Recent Works