Yuko Nii

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Yuko Nii at the Williamsburg Art & Historical Center

Yuko Nii (born 1942) is a Japanese artist and philanthropist. Her work has included painting, printmaking, graphic design, stage set, costume and fashion design. She has written journalism, poetry, fiction, essays and philosophy, and published a book with Terrance Lindall, entitled Blue Eyed Satori.

Early life and education[edit]

The daughter of a steel executive, Nii was born in 1942.[1] For the first several years of her life, she lived in Tokyo, but her family relocated to Hiroshima in 1945, shortly before it was bombed by the United States. She studied (1961–63) English and American Literature at Aoyama Gakuin University, Tokyo, Japan.[2] In 1963 she transferred to Macalaster College, St. Paul, Minnesota as a scholarship student, and earned her BFA. in 1965. From 1966 she attended Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, New York, as a fellowship student and earned her Master of Fine Arts in painting in 1969.

Williamsburg Art & Historical Center[edit]

In 1996, Nii founded the not for profit Williamsburg Art & Historical Center (WAH Center) in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, New York, which is housed in the Kings County Savings Bank Building in the National Register of Historic Places - a New York City Landmark.[3]

Honors and awards[edit]

In 1998, Howard Golden, then Brooklyn borough president, named Nii Brooklyn’s Women of the Year.[4] In 2001, Governor George Pataki named Nii a "Woman of Excellence, Vision and Courage."


  1. ^ Gray, Christopher (29 October 2000). "Streetscapes/Former Kings County Savings Bank on Broadway in Brooklyn; From a Bank to an Art Center, Via an Artist's Vision". Retrieved 10 November 2013. 
  2. ^ "Yuko Nii's Biography". wahcenter.net. 
  3. ^ Susan Finch (18 May 2010). Metro New York Off the Beaten Path. Globe Pequot. p. 82. 
  4. ^ Seth Kamil, Eric Wakin (2005). The Big Onion Guide to Brooklyn. NYU Press. p. 90.