Naomi Kashiwagi (born 1982, Halifax,UK) is an award-winning artist based in Manchester and has shown work across the UK and internationally. Kashiwagi produces works on paper, installations, performances and sound works that draw upon her cultural heritage, an intrinsic fusion of two cultures, British and Japanese. Drawing is central to Kashiwagi's practice and she makes drawings using a range of media including diamonds, typewriters, gramophones and pianos, as well as graphite and pen. 

Kashiwagi won both Arts Council North West prize, art08 Individual Artist Award and Best of Manchester Award (Art) in 2008. In 2013 she was shortlisted for the Women in the Arts Award; part of Manchester's International Women's Day Celebrations and was shortlisted for the Nationwide Mercury Prize Art competition in 2005.

Kashiwagi’s practice playfully provokes the fringes of disciplines and genres, the intersections and impacts of visual art, music and everyday life upon one another and the cyclical nature of obsolescence and technological innovation. She explores the potential of things beyond their prescribed uses by poetically transforming their utilitarian and conceptual function. 

Naomi Kashiwagi works through reinvention and integrates poetic rituals into everyday life to reveal and reimagine the innate curiosities and enchantments of the everyday. Her work examines the complexities of the everyday, the poetics qualities and potential for inventiveness in everyday life that contribute to an inquisitive quest for reclaiming the everyday. 

Notable exhibitions and performances include Innsbruck International: Festival of the Arts (2013), SOUNDWORKS, ICA, London (2012), Progress Reports: Art in an era of diversity, INIVA, Rivington Place London (2010), Paperworks: Paper Art in the 21st Century, Bury Art Gallery (2010), The Intertwining Line: Drawing as Subversive Art, Cornerhouse, Manchester (2008), Wind-Up, Barbican, London (2008). Kashiwagi’s work is also in the Whitworth Art Gallery’s collection.

Anatomy Projects: Haiku

Kashiwagi has been invited to perform Gramophonica at Canada’s leading gallery for contemporary art, The Power Plant, Toronto for the Power Ball 2014. In 2013, Kashiwagi was selected to show new drawings and perform Gramophonica at Innsbruck International: Festival of the Arts. Other exhibiting artists included Willie Doherty, Marcus Coates and Pavel Büchler.  

She is one of the seven international artists, including Rosa Barba and Humberto Vélez, that have been commissioned by Cornerhouse, Manchester to respond to Jacques Tati’s 1967 masterpiece Playtime for their closing exhibition, Playtime (November 2014) before moving to their new location, HOME.

Kashiwagi’s work is published in the book, Drawing Now: Between the Lines of Contemporary Art (2007), alongside artists including Cornelia Parker, Tracey Emin and Paul Noble. She was featured in the Guardian’s feature Analogue artists defying the digital age (2011). In 2012, Kashiwagi was profiled in the Dazed Digital feature, Peter Saville Selects Naomi Kashiwagi. Kashiwagi was interviewed in 2013 for KOBRA, the premiere arts and culture feature programme on SVT (Swedish National Television). The documentary Longing for Analog was shown across Scandinavia and featured interviews with Chris Ware, Chris Burden and Malik Bendjelloul.

Naomi Kashiwagi studied BA Fine Art (2004) and won an Erasmus Scholarship to study for 3 months at The Academy of Fine Arts in Venice in 2003. In 2005 she studied MA Fine Art at Manchester School of Art (MMU)and spent a month studying at Tokyo University of Art and Music. In 2007 Kashiwagi studied MA Art Gallery and Museum Studies at the University of Manchester.

Between 2009-2012, Kashiwagi was on the judging panel for the Arts Council England flagship project for the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad, Artists taking the lead. In 2010, she was invited by Andrew Nairne (former Executive Director of Arts Strategy at the Arts Council England) to respond to 'What can art do?' and her quote was selected to be included in Achieving great art for everyone | A Strategic Framework for the Arts | Arts Council | 2010 | p.14 | and Achieving great art and culture for everyone | 10 year strategic framework 2010-2020 | Arts Council England | 2013 | p.57 |. This quote was cited in TILLTEUROPE: Creative Clash: Transforming Organisations with the Arts: Artistic Interventions to stimulate innovation, sustainability and inclusivity | 2010 | p.5 |