Yuko Shimizu

Yuko Shimizu (清水裕子) is a Japanese illustrator based in New York City whose work combines Japanese heritage with contemporary reference points.[1] Works by Shimizu address a range of serious issues including sex, race, and cultural identity, but also can be light and whimsical.[2]

Shimizu began illustrating professionally in 2003 soon after she completed her master’s degree. Her first client was The Village Voice, with art director Minh Uong.[10] She would soon add The New York TimesThe New Yorker and the Financial Times to her list of patrons.

Between 2007 and 2010, Shimizu illustrated 33 CD insert covers for Now Hear This, which was a recommended music listening list published by the UK magazine The World. Covers in this series always depicted a woman and a music theme.[11]

In 2009, Shimizu was named among the 100 Japanese people the world respect by Newsweek Japan.[6]

Between 2009 and 2015 Shimizu created over 70 covers for the DC Comic Series The Unwritten.[2] In her first cover for the series, Shimizu displayed many of the stylistic trademarks that would later brand her as an innovator in the field of illustration by setting the mood of the big picture of the story.[8] Her 43rd cover would win her a silver medal from the Society of Illustrators.[12]

Shimizu has illustrated for clients, such as Library of CongressAppleAdobeMicrosoftMTVTargetNational Public RadioTimeThe New York TimesThe New YorkerRolling StoneGQ, and many more.[13]

In 2018, Shimizu would win the Hamilton King Award,[14] considered by many to be the most prestigious award in illustration.[15]

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