Nakaya's Fog Sculpture #08025 "F.O.G.," Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Spain
Nakaya was born in Sapporo in 1933, where her father Ukichiro Nakaya, who is credited with making the first artificial snowflakes, was at the time an assistant professor at Hokkaido University. Her father later produced a number of documentary films and radio programs and founded Iwanami Productions, a producer of documentary and educational films, and was also an accomplished sumi-e artist.
She created the world's first fog sculpture at the Pepsi Pavilion, Expo '70, Osaka, Japan, as a member of Experiments in Art and Technology (E.A.T.) and has since established fog installations at galleries worldwide, including the Australian National Gallery, Canberra and the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao.
She opened Japan's only video art gallery, Video Gallery SCAN in Harajuku, in 1980.
She was a lecturer in the Department of Cinema, College of Arts, at Nihon University from 1979 to 1998.
She has received numerous awards including the Australian Cultural Award, the Laser d’Or at the Locarno International Video Festival, the Yoshida Isoya Special Award, the Minister for Posts and Telecommunications Award for artistic contribution to HDTV programming and the Special Achievement Prize at the 2008 Japan Media Arts Festival