Famous Artists from Japan

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List of the most popular artists from Japan, listed alphabetically with photos when available. For centuries artists have been among the world's most important people, helping chronicle history and keep us entertained with one of the earliest forms of entertainment. Whether they're known for painting, sculpting, etching or drawing, the famous Japanese artists on this list have kept that tradition alive by creating renowned pieces of art that have been praised around the world. You can find useful information below about these notable Japanese artists, such as when they were born and where their place of birth was.

Examples include Nobuyoshi Araki and Kou Yaginuma.

This list answers the questions, "Which famous artists are from Japan?" and "Who are the most well-known Japanese artists?"

For further information on these historic Japanese artists, click on their names. If you're a fine art lover use this list of celebrated Japanese artists to discover some new paintings that you will enjoy.
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  1. 1
    Yoko Ono is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Famous Artists from Japan
    Photo: Earl McGehee/flickr/CC-BY 2.0

    Yoko Ono, is a Japanese multimedia artist, singer, and peace activist. She is the widow and second wife of John Lennon and is also known for her work in avant-garde art, music, and filmmaking. Ono grew up in Tokyo, and studied at Gakushuin University while her family moved to the US to escape the war.more

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    • Birthplace: Japan, Tokyo
    • Nationality: Japan
  2. 2

    Hiroshi Sasagawa

    Hiroshi Sasagawa is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Famous Artists from Japan
    Photo: user uploaded image

    Hiroshi Sasagawa is a creator of several anime and manga series. His name is romanized in some sources as Hiroshi Sasakawa. more

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    • Birthplace: Aizuwakamatsu, Japan
    • Nationality: Japan
  3. 3
    Osamu Tezuka is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Famous Artists from Japan
    Photo: Freebase

    Osamu Tezuka was a Japanese cartoonist, animator, film producer, and activist. Born in Osaka Prefecture, he is best known as the creator of the comics series Astro Boy, Kimba the White Lion and Black Jack. His prolific output, pioneering techniques, and innovative redefinitions of genres earned him such ...more

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    • Birthplace: Japan, Toyonaka
    • Nationality: Japan
  4. 4
    Namio Harukawa is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Famous Artists from Japan
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Namio Harukawa is a Japanese artist known for his realistic femdom erotica drawings. He created around one thousand unique drawings. Harukawa's artwork features voluptuous women with large breasts, wide hips, round buttocks and thick legs overpowering and humiliating smaller men. The women in Harukawa's ...more

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    • Birthplace: Osaka, Japan
    • Nationality: Japan
  5. 5

    Leiji Matsumoto is a well-known creator of several anime and manga series. His wife Miyako Maki is also known as a manga artist. more

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    • Birthplace: Kurume, East Asia, Asia, Japan, Kyushu, + more
    • Nationality: Japan
  6. 6

    Yu Watase is a female Japanese shōjo manga artist. more

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    • Birthplace: Osaka Prefecture, East Asia, Honshu, Osaka, Asia, + more
    • Nationality: Japan
  7. 7
    Kazuo Koike is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Famous Artists from Japan
    Photo: Freebase/Fair use

    Kazuo Koike is a prolific Japanese manga writer, novelist and entrepreneur. more

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    • Birthplace: Akita Prefecture, Daisen, East Asia, Honshu, Asia, + more
    • Nationality: Japan
  8. 8
    Katsuhiro Otomo is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Famous Artists from Japan
    Photo: Freebase/Public domain

    Katsuhiro Otomo is a Japanese manga artist, screenwriter and film director. He is best known as the creator of the manga Akira and its animated film adaptation. He was decorated a Chevalier of the French Ordre des Arts et des Lettres in 2005, promoted to Officier of the order in 2014, became the fourth ...more

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    • Birthplace: Tome, East Asia, Honshu, Asia, Japan, + more
    • Nationality: Japan
    • Art Forms: Manga
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