Masayo Nishimura


I began studying photography in 1993. From the beginning I was attracted to the lights and shadows created by subway architecture, especially the way the roofs of cars and tracks are bathed in light from the street. I always marveled at the effects so produced; they reminded me of Medieval religious paintings. The lighting often created dreamlike shadows, sometimes creating ghostly effects. I was always fascinated with the surreal images created by this everyday environment.

In April 2000, I visited nearby station with a rented Hasselblad. That was a sunny Sunday morning and I felt the lighting through the street level looked perfect. I set up my tripod in the platform and started pressing the cable release. I continued to do so for about thirty minutes until a policeman interrupted me. I was disappointed, but the results of that half hour’s work developed quite beautifully, and I felt quite blessed. The images I captured that morning were first exhibited in a group show which opened at the Gallery located just a few blocks away from the WTC on Thursday, September 6th, 2001.

Now these works remind me of the innocence of New York City before 9/11, the city I’ve loved so dearly since I moved here two decades ago.

Masayo Nishimura

Solo Exhibitions:

2021Crossing the Road, Ceres Gallery, NYC
2018Uptown Bound- Restropective, Ceres Gallery, NYC
2016My Old ‘New Town’ – Recollections Vol.3, Ceres Gallery, NYC
2014The New Horizon, – Scenes in northern Japan nearly two years after the disaster, Ceres Gallery, NYC
2012Recollections vol. 2; Tokyo, June 2011, Ceres Gallery, NYC
2011Uptown Bound – First & Another 10th Anniversary, Gallery 502a, NYC
2011 Recollections: From New York to Tokyo, Ceres Gallery, NYC
2010Some Notion of Perfection, Ceres Gallery, NYC
2009Uptown Bound, Ceres Gallery, NYC
2008Uptown Bound, Abrons Arts Center, Henry Street Settlement, NYC
2006Uptown Bound , Paula Barr Chelsea, NYC
2001Scene #1, SoHo Photo Gallery, , NYC
20001/1, 7th and 2nd Street Photo Gallery, NYC

Group Exhibitions:

2019Raising Women’s Voices, 2019, Members Group Show, Ceres Gallery, NYC
2017My Favorite Things, Members Group Show, Ceres Gallery, NYC
2015Uptown Bound, Exposure Group show, Ceres Gallery, NYC
2014Three Decades of Ceres, Ceres Group Show, Ceres Gallery, NYC
2012Recollections from New York to Tokyo, Exposure Group Show, Ceres Gallery, NYC
2011What matters now? Proposals for a new front page,  Aperture Gallery, NYC
2010Some Notion of Perfection, Ceres Gallery, NYC
2009Ineffable Woman: a Bi-Coastal Conversation about Women’s Art, Ceres Gallery, NYC
2009 Ineffable Woman: a Bi-Coastal Conversation about Women’s Art, California Institute of Integral Studies, San Francisco CA
2008Ceres Summer Group Show, Ceres Gallery, NYC
2001Group Show, SoHo Photo Gallery, NYC
2000Generations II, A.I.R.Gallery in SoHo, NYC
1999MFA Thesis Show, Visual Art Gallery in SoHo, NYC
1997Through the Lens, Agora Gallery in SoHo, NYC
Generations, A.I.R.Gallery in SoHo, NYC
Something Twisted,
SVA Eastside Gallery, NYC
Five Vu, 
Synchronicity Space in SoHo, NYC
1996City Vibes, Ward-Nasse Gallery in SoHo, NYC
ConversAsia, Open House Exhibition in SoHo, NYC
Force of Habit, Repetition Reinforces Collectively, A.I.R.Gallery in SoHo, NYC
1995Hot Shot, Broadway Mall Community Center in NYC

Selected Video & Film Screenings:

2000Black Maria Film Festival, Jersey City, New Jersey
Cinequest San Jose Film Festival, San Jose, California
Dallas Video Festival, Dallas, Texas
New Directors/New Films, Film Society of Lincoln Center & Museum of Modern Art, New York (screened at MOMA)
Film Fest New Heaven, New Heaven, Connecticut
Taos Talking Picture Film Festival, Taos, New Mexico
Thaw 00:Festival of Video, Film, and Digital media, Iowa City, Iowa
ARCIPELAGO-Festival Internazionale di Cortometraggi e Nuove Immagini, Rome, Italy, 2000 Stony Brook Film Festival, Stony Brook, New York
CYNETart 00, Dresden, Germany
1999ANIMAC, Mostra Internacional De Cinema D’animacio, Lleida, Spain
San Luis Obispo International Film Festival, San Luis Obispo, California
The Louisville Film and Video Festival, Louisville, Kentucky
The New York Exposition of short Film and Video, NYC, New York
Telluride IndieFest, Telluride, Colorado

Television Broadcasting:

2003WNET/Thirteen the eighth annual Reel New York
2000The Territory, programmed by South West Alternative Media Project (SWAMP)


2000Director’s Choice Award, Black Maria Film Festival
2000Student Academy Award, New York regional finalist
2000Honorable Mention, Rochester International Film Festival
1999Honorable Mention, San Luis Obispo International Film Festival
1999Jurors’ Award, The Louisville Film and Video Festival
1999Jury Award, The New York Exposition of Short Film and Video Festival
1999Short Video Winner, Telluride IndieFest


2012Masayo Nishimura: Recollections vol. 2, Tokyo, June 2011 Ceres Gallery By Tema Stauffer,
2011Snap frozen moments: Masayo Nishimura at Ceres Gallery by Lynette Chiang , Chelsea Gallerista –
2011Fashion Week Fall 2011 / Getaways from the Runways, GOTHAM MAGAZINE,
20113 Cool Things to Do This Weekend | CityRover New York , by Esther Zinn,
2009Uptown Bound: Ceres presents Masayo Nishimura’s New York City subway photographs,
by Lorenzo Dominguez, NY Photography Examiner
2001Through the looking glass: Japanese artists on view in N.Y. by Catherine Heines The Daily Yomiuri
2000ND/NF: Short Films Make it Big, Where You’ll Find the Next Spike Jonze by Anthony Kaufman,


MFA Computer Arts, School of Visual Arts, New York
BA Theater Arts, Hunter College of City University of New York
BFA Oil Painting, Women’s College of Fine Arts, Tokyo, Japan