b. 1930, Japan

Minoru Niizuma Biography

Born 1930 in Tokyo, Japan, Minoru Niizuma immigrated to the United States in the postwar period, following his education at Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music, and his subsequent local success exhibiting with the Modern Art Association in Tokyo. Settling in New York in 1959, Niizuma joined the Brooklyn Museum Art School in 1964 as a teacher, while simultaneously stepping deep into the emerging artistic cluster that came to be affiliated with the term “Minimalism.” Throughout his life, Niizuma worked in series, mostly focusing on refining and iterating a single form over the course of several years. With his carved stone works, sitting on the edge of symbolic figuration with their distinctive juxtapositions of smooth and rugged texture, Niizuma was included in shows at the Whitney Museum of American Art and the Guggenheim. Niizuma also privileged other means of exposing the public to his works, his works prized in both institutional and commercial sculpture gardens. As a result, he began to place works in museum collections including the Hirshhorn Museum, the Guggenheim, SFMOMA and the Museum of Modern Art.

Read More

Following his six years at the Brooklyn Museum, Niizuma was named an adjunct professor at Columbia University, where he taught from 1972 through 1984. In the early 80’s, he began a pivot that would carry him into the last 20 years of his life and work, when he traveled to Portugal as part of the Evora Symposium. The immense array of marble and stone available in the European nation brought Niizuma back time and time again, eventually resulting in a partnership with Portuguese President Mario Soares to build artistic exchange between Portugal and Japan. Niizuma passed away in 1998.

Text courtesy Tina Kim Gallery.

Minoru Niizuma Featured Artworks

Unknown by Minoru Niizuma contemporary artwork sculpture
Minoru Niizuma Unknown, c. 1986 Italian Paonazzo marble
49.5 x 34.3 x 29.8 cm
Tina Kim Gallery Contact Gallery
Crenel by Minoru Niizuma contemporary artwork sculpture
Minoru Niizuma Crenel, 1975 Verona red marble
99.1 x 48.3 x 48.3 cm
Tina Kim Gallery Contact Gallery
Black Mountain by Minoru Niizuma contemporary artwork sculpture
Minoru Niizuma Black Mountain, 1986 Portuguese Black Granite
138 x 42 x 40 cm
Tina Kim Gallery Contact Gallery
Unknown by Minoru Niizuma contemporary artwork sculpture
Minoru Niizuma Unknown, c. 1986 Pale Pink Marble
38.1 x 47 x 34.9 cm
Tina Kim Gallery Contact Gallery

Minoru Niizuma Recent Exhibitions

Minoru Niizuma In Ocula Magazine

Sign up to be notified when new artworks and exhibitions by Minoru Niizuma are added to Ocula.
Sign Up