Naoko Shibuya

Born: 1975
Place of Birth: Japan

Naoko was born and brought-up in Japan, however chose to study Fine Art at Edinburgh College of Art where she won their Student Prize in 2000. In 2001 she graduated with a Master of Fine Art in Painting and Drawing, exhibiting her work both in Edinburgh and in Munich. Naoko's detailed paintings have spread over the UK, to New York and of course Japan.

“My Paintings are based on the subconscious world which surrounds us all. In this world, there are a lot of rules, common sense and stereotypes which have been created by man. On the other hand, there is a substance which we can never truly catch, map or resist.

For the last few years, I have been very inspired by this invisible stream and the phenomenon of fleeting moments in nature. I have been trying to capture something of its essence.

Most of the images in my paintings come from the impression and spectrum of nature. Also, I draw ideas from the form of trees, plants, flowers and lately small birds, not only for visual effects, but also to express the strength and robustness of nature. Plants and flowers show dramatic changes in such a short time when they are in bloom and also, when they wither. Each figure in each moment represents the turn of time, which seems to go far towards expressing my subject.

The circles and spirals in my work represent symbols of reincarnation, which can be often found in Zen and Celtic philosophy. I have been trying to express the repeating and everlasting flow of life through these forms.  Getting ideas from these symbols and combining them with my drawing is the essence of my personal artistic rhythm.” - Naoko Shibuya, 2016