Nonaka Mitsumasa

Nonaka Mitsumasa 野中光正 (b. 1949) 

Undated photo of the artist

image source:


Sources: compiled from biographies appearing on various Japanese gallery websites including 砂丘館 sakyukan [accessed 11-20-23] and NIIGATA EYA [accessed 11-20-23]

Born near Asakusa in Taito City, Tokyo in 1949, Nonaka grew up watching the work of printers, carvers, and printmakers in his neighborhood. He studied at the Pacific Art Institute from 1968 to 1971, and at the Shibuya Institute of Western Painting from 1973 to 1982. Nonaka began his painting career in 1967 and in 1973 he began creating woodblock prints. In addition to woodblock printmaking and painting he also works in mixed media.

He had his first solo exhibition of woodblock prints at the Yokohama International Passenger Terminal in 1977 and in that same year exhibited at the Japan Print Association Exhibition. In 1989, he moved to Takayanagi, Niigata Prefecture, where he studied paper-making. He returned to Tokyo at the end of October of the same year. Since then, he has held numerous solo and group exhibitions. 

While the largest body of his work is abstract or semi-abstracted figurative work, Nonaka pays his respect to the ukiyo-e tradition, saying "I can't talk about my works without the tradition of ukiyo-e and the foundation of the sensitivity from these crafts." 

A Few Example of the Artist's Work (Reference images not in this collection)

OP-34, 1977

Woodblock print

16 11/16 × 11 13/16 in. (42.4 × 30 cm)

signed ナカ ミツマサ (Nonaka Mitsumasa)

Honolulu Museum of Art

Object number:32186

untitled, 1985

woodblock print

10.5 x 7.5 in. (27 x 19 cm)

untitled, mixed media on kozo paper, 2019

24 x 18 in. (60.8 x 45.6 cm)


last revision:created 6/29/2021

Prints in Collection

click on thumbnail for print details

Op. 7 1976

IHL Cat. #2174

Op. 10, 1976

IHL Cat. #2173

Op. 28, 1977

IHL Cat. #2142