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Nairobi Residence 2011

Nairobi Residence 2011

Japanese selected artists, Akira Higashi and Megumi Matsubara, visited Nairobi and stayed there to work on creation with the cooperation of Kenyan staff and local residents through a one-month residency program. The artists found their own fields from their unique viewpoints and senses, and developed new relationships with the community in the process of creation.

Nairobi Sticks(Nairobi Sticks, Akira Higashi)

Akira Higashi worked on creation at the open area of collected ateliers for making furniture. His art piece remained as a resting bench for artisans after he left Nairobi.

Parachute in a Church, Akira Higashi

Akira Higashi offered a workshop for children in the Nairobi Pentecostal Church of Karen, using lots of parachutes created from garbage bags and curtains found in Nairobi.

STRA: Billboard, Megumi Matsubara

Megumi Matsubara and her Kenyan collaborator, Otieno Kota, made the installation art work in Kibera. They spread out a white large cloth to cover a giant advertising pole, and projected a series of snapshots depicting daily life in Kibera.

STRA: Newspaper, Megumi Matsubara

Megumi Matsubara produced her own newspapers based on her personal experiences in Nairobi, and sold them to passengers at a newspaper stand on the street.

Artists’ Profile

Akira Higashi

Akira Higashi

Born in Hiroshima, Japan, in 1974. Lives and works in Kyoto. He received his B.F.A in sculpture from Kyoto City University of Arts in 1998. His graduation work was awarded the Kyoto Mayor Prize. His sculpture is not self-contained but each time the audience interacts with it as users, the relationship between them and the work is newly formed. His aim is to insert a new aspect into a space of daily life. He utilizes familiar and affluent materials such as blanch, cloth, and vinyl, to create constructions. He has had numerous exhibitions in Japan, including bed (solo exhibition, Art Space Niji, Kyoto, 2002), dance de la fleur (Akiyoshidai international Art Village, Yamaguchi, 2009) and Kyo-Sei (@KCUA, Kyoto, 2010). He participated in Force of Nature, residency program in Charlotte (North Carolina, 2006).


Megumi Matsubara

Megumi Matsubara

Photo: Bianca Codognet

Born in Tokyo, Japan in 1977. Lives and works in Tokyo. She works individually as artist and collectively as architect through Assistant, the architectural office that she co-founded in 2002. She received her MA from the University of Tokyo and later from the Bartlett School of Architecture studying under Peter Cook. Based on an architectural approach, her works combine the use of diverse media such as installation, performance and writing to question the balance between presence/absence. Recent works and projects include SD Review (Assistant, 2010), exhibition space design for the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation (Assistant, Tokyo, 2009), PUBLISHED (solo exhibition, Art Center Ongoing, Tokyo, 2009), Emporium (Museo Leonardo da Vinci, Milano, 2009), and a project visit to Lagos (supported by the Japan Foundation, 2009).


Call For Artist_Nairobi Residence 2011

Download the following file to check the outline of calling for artists.



  • Organizer: Nishio Workshop Nairobi
  • Grant Received from: The Japan Foundation
  • Corporate Sponsors: HRInstitute
  • In Association with: Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Nairobi Research Station
  • Supported by: Nairobi Arts Trust/ Centre for Contemporary Art of East Africa

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