NAOTO NAKAGAWA (b. 1944)
Naoto Nakagawa was born in Kobe, Japan in 1944. Growing up in postwar Japan, Nakagawa was exposed to the action art and prototypical performance art of the avant-garde Gutai movement and immigrated to New York City in 1962 to pursue a career as an artist. In New York, Nakagawa won a scholarship to the Brooklyn Museum’s art school and befriended fellow Japanese immigrant artists On Kawara and Shusaku Arakawa. After graduating in the late 1960s, Nakagawa began producing paintings that incorporated odd combinations of objects, existing somewhere between surrealism, photorealism, and pop art. More recently, he has embarked on a number of panting series which present jarring juxtapositions of painted objects, all tied together with thematically related subject matter.
His paintings have been widely exhibited, starting in 1968 at the Judson Gallery in New York, followed by New York galleries Reese Paley, OK Harris, Allan Frumkin, Victoria Munroe, Feature Inc., and the Obelisk Gallery in Boston. More recently, Nakagawa’s work has been featured in a two-part survey at the White Box, NY and Ethan Cohen Fine Arts, NY. He has participated in numerous group shows at The Guggenheim Museum, The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Venice Biennale in 2005, among others. His work is represented in the public collections of the New York Museum of Modern Art, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the Worcester Museum, and The National Museums of Modern Art in Osaka and in Kyoto, among others. He is also the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts grant and has taught and lectured at Columbia University and Parsons School of Design.