Hikari Shimoda dons pink hair and green glasses in a portrait

Hikari Shimoda

Where cuteness and horror coexist

“In 2022, it seems the world is on a path of turmoil and despair. My art begins with how I feel and think about today’s society.”

Inspired by Japanese manga and anime from her youth, Hikari Shimoda paints modern-day issues with colourful and illustrative techniques. Her paintings often depict starry-eyed children dressed in heroic costumes resembling Superman and magical girls – an anime sub-genre of young girls who use magic. These storylines often reveal problems and struggles in contemporary society, and Shimoda does the...

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Hikari Shimoda was born in 1984 in Nagano, Japan, where she continues to live and work.


Shimoda cites animator Hayao Miyazaki as her biggest inspiration. Like the narratives in her paintings, Miyazaki’s stories also revolve around love and despair.


Shimoda discovered painting in high school and has pursued it ever since. Before that she dreamt of becoming a manga artist – its influence is still evident in her paintings today.

Collaborations with Hikari Shimoda

Avant Arte and Hikari Shimoda have one upcoming collaboration.