MSA Pop-Up Gallery Artist Spotlight: Noriko Sakanishi

We’re thrilled to feature the work of two Maine artists — William Manning and Noriko Sakanishi — at the MSA Pop-Up Gallery through March 20. Both artists have known each other and admired each other’s work for decades. Their work is strong and extremely forceful, Manning’s sometimes drenched with color, Sakanishi’s not.

Noriko Sakanishi’s wall constructions on view at the MSA Pop-Up Gallery, 67 Washington Ave, Portland.

Noriko Sakanishi’s three dimensional wall constructions, drawings, and collages provide space for release within strictly defined geometric boundaries. Her collages reflect on personal history using scraps of fabric from her and her mother’s clothing, and bits of printed materials. We invite you to take a deeper look at Sakanishi’s pieces and read about how she describes her relationship to these mediums below.

Never Leave, 2016 by Noriko Sakanishi, 23″x15.5″x4.5″, acrylic and mixed media


“I began my art career as a sculptor carving stone and wood but found it necessary, due to a severe shoulder injury caused by the carving motions and impacts, to switch to working with lighter materials. After experimenting with different materials, I developed an approach to three-dimensional wall constructions that provided an opportunity to still think sculpturally while also adding elements of painting.”


“In my drawings, I set the formal (usually geometric) limitations to what I am about to do and then release myself in the format. I can go anywhere in it. Each step leads to the next.”


“Although my approach to art is primarily intuitive, it seems clear that my collages reflect on my personal history as well. The materials I use for the collages include pieces of my previously unfinished art works, scraps of fabric from my own and my mother’s clothing, bits of printed materials which were too good to be thrown away, and new elements.”

Noriko Sakanishi’s wall constructions, drawings, and collages are on view at the MSA Pop-Up Gallery.

See more of Sakanishi’s work in-person in our online gallery and at the MSA Pop-Up Gallery through March 20.

MSA Pop-Up Gallery Hours:
Wed – Sat, 12pm – 5pm

67 Washington Ave Portland (former Nissen Bakery Building)

Please know that we strictly follow the CDC guidelines for the State of Maine including limiting the number of people in the gallery at any one time to 5, respectfully require the wearing of masks (which we can provide if you don’t have one), and appropriate social distancing.