Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Master of Fine Arts, May 1994
Concentration: Painting

Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island
Bachelor of Arts with Honors in Visual Arts May 1989
Concentration: Visual Arts


Illinois Arts Council Artist Fellowship Finalist Award, April 2019

City of Chicago Public Art Commission Edgewater Library
Department of Cultural Affairs, Chicago, Illinois, February 2015.

3Arts Award Nominee, Teaching artist category. 3Arts Chicago, March 2014.

Chicago Artists’ Assistance Program Grant,
City of Chicago, Department of Cultural Affairs, Chicago, Illinois, August 2010.

Chicago Artists’ Assistance Program Grant,
City of Chicago, Department of Cultural Affairs, Chicago, Illinois, January 2008

Teaching Assistantship, Studio Art Centers International, Florence, Italy, September 1994 – July 1995.

Merit Scholarship, Master of Fine Arts Program,
Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, September 1992 - May 1994.

Residency, Vermont Studio Center, Johnson, Vermont, November 1991.

Departmental Honors, Department of Visual Arts,
Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island, May 1989

Purchase Prize, Department of Visual Arts,
Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island, March 1989.


Wisconsin Museum of Quilts and Fiber Arts, Water, Cedarburg, Wisconsin, August - November 2019

Entoten at Gallery Codocco, Craft from America, Tokyo Japan, May 2019

Hyde Park Art Center, (sub)Urban, Chicago, Illinois, March - April 2019

Circle Contemporary, Community in Color. Chicago, Illinois, January - February 2018

LillStreet Gallery, the Post Modern Quilt.  Chicago, Illinois, May 2017 - July 2017.

Hyde Park Art Center, Not Just Another Pretty Face, an exhibition of commissioned work by Chicago Artists.  Chicago, Illinois, December 2016 - March 2017.

 San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles, Found/Made, curated by Roderick Kiracofe, San Jose, California, July - November 2015.

Indiana University Northwest Gallery for Contemporary Art, Sarah Nishiura Quilts, Gary, Indiana, February - March 2015.

International Quilt Week Yokohama, Modern Quilts from North America, featured exhibition in the annual quilt festival,  Pacifico Yokohama, Japan, November 2014.

Room 406, Transcendent Objects Ryota Aoki, Lilith Rockett, Sarah Nishiura, Chicago, Illinois, September 2014

LillStreet Gallery, Familiar Bedfellows: New work by Matthew Groves and Sarah Nishiura, Chicago, Illinois, July - August 2014.

Hyde Park Art Center, Fast Forward, Rewind, Play. Curatorial lab exploring the theme "Circle in a Square", with James Kao, Mie Kongo, and Hyde Park Art Center quilt students. Chicago, Illinois, June 2014 .

Hyde Park Art Center, Not Just Another Pretty Face, an exhibition of commissioned work by Chicago Artists.  Chicago, Illinois, December 2013 - March 2014.

Tall Grass Arts Association, Material World, Park Forest, Illinois, June-July 2013.

Hyde Park Art Center, Abstracting the Seam, Chicago, Illinois, May - September 2013.

Governor's State University Gallery, Ways of Making, University Park, Illinois, June 2012.

Jackson Junge Gallery, Element Flux, Chicago, Illinois, October 2011.

San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles, Scrap Art, San Jose, California, August – October 2011

Lake County Discovery Museum (in conjunction with the Northern Illinois Quilt Fest) Quilt Treasures: Pieces of History, Wauconda, Illinois, July – September 2011.

Art Igloo, Abacus Asleep, an on-line installation with James Kao and Mie Kongo,, February - March 2011

Chicago Printmakers’ Collaborative, 21st Annual Small Print Show, Chicago, Illinois, December 2010 – February 2011

Koehnline Museum of Art, No Place Like Home, Oakton Community College, Des Plaines, Illinois, October - November 2010

WomanMade Gallery, Her Way with Print, Chicago, Illinois, July – August 2010.

ARC Gallery, Materiality, Chicago, Illinois, March 2010

Chicago Printmakers’ Collaborative, 20th Annual Small Print Show, Chicago, Illinois, December 2009.

Sarah Doyle Gallery, Brown University, Crooked Mile, Quilts by Sarah Nishiura, Solo Exhibition, Providence, Rhode Island, April 2009.                                    

Wagner Gallery, Wagner College, Matthew Groves, Figurative Ceramics, Sarah Nishiura Works on Paper, Staten Island, New York, October 2007.

Chicago Printmakers Collaborative, Beyond Boundaries, national touring exhibition, various locations, October 2006 – May 2008 .                                         

Chicago Printmakers Collaborative, 15th Annual Small Print Show Chicago, Illinois, December 2004 - February 2005.

3rd Floor Gallery, Chicago Art Open, Chicago Artist’s Coalition and the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs, Chicago, Illinois, November 1999.

Klein Artworks, 3rd Occasional Survey of Chicago Abstraction, Chicago, Illinois,  December 1998.

Inside Art Gallery, solo exhibition, Chicago, Illinois, April – June 1997

South Shore Cultural Center Gallery, Women of Vision 1997, Chicago Park District, Chicago, Illinois, March - April 1997.

S.A.C.I. Gallery, Sarah Nishiura, Dipinti, solo exhibition, Florence, Italy, June - July 1995.

S.A.C.I. Gallery Mostra dei Docenti, Florence, Italy, December 1994.

Temple University Rome Art from the Faculty of American University Programs in Italy, Rome, Italy, October 1994.


July 2016 - Present
Entoten, San Diego, California


Hyde Park Art Center, Teaching Artist, Chicago, Illinois, July 2009 - Present.
Quilt Making, a practical and historical course on quilt design and technique.
Practice Makes, a course focused on developing studio practice across different art media.
Anyone Can Sew, an introduction to hand and machine sewing techniques
Embroidery, hand embroidery for beginners

Lill Street Art Center, Instructor, Chicago, Illinois, September 2010 – Present.
First-time Quilting - beginning level quilting
Quilt Projects - advanced level quilting
Advanced Piecing techniques
Workshops on Hand Quilting, Strip Piecing, Curved Piecing, Foundation Piecing

New Trier High School, Visiting Artist, Winnetka, Illinois, April 2019

QuiltCon, The Modern Quilt Guild, Nashville, Tennessee, February 2019
Workshops: Reconsider the Grid, Deconstructing Design

School of the Art Institute of Chicago Homan Square, Storytelling and Quilts Class July 2018
Workshop: Hand Quilting
Lecture: Quilts and untold stories

Wisconsin Museum of Quilts and Fiber Arts, Cedarburg, Wisconsin, September 2016.
Workshop: Deconstructing Design
Lecture: Handwork and Design

Chicago Modern Quilt Guild, Oak Park, Illinois, April 2016.
Workshop: Reconsider the Grid, a design based workshop focused on ways to manipulate the grid to create different effects in geometric quilt design.
Lecture: Quilts and Community

QuiltCon, The Modern Quilt Guild, Austin, Texas, February 2015
Full day workshops: Consider Curves and Foundation Piecing

The Needle Shop, Instructor, Chicago, Illinois, September  - November 2013.
Offered workshops in Quilt making and Appliqué techniques.

Brown University, Visiting Artist. Lectured and gave critiques to advanced and beginning painters. Providence, Rhode Island, April 2009.

Studio Art Centers International, Instructor, Intermediate Painting, undergraduate level.  Teaching Assistant, Undergraduate Level Beginning and Advanced Drawing and Painting Courses, Florence, Italy, September 1994 – July 1995.


OkanArts, Sarah Nishiura, Born to Quilt, May 2018

Riksha Magazine, Asian American Creative Arts in Action, Volume 2. Fall 2018

Curated Quilts, Issue 1, Linear, October 2017

Entoten Blog,  The Fabrics of a Craft: Quiltmaker Sarah Nishiura, July 2017

Asian American Art Oral History Project, Sarah Nishiura Interview by Larry Villanueava,

Not Just Another Pretty Face 2016, Exhibition Catalogue, Hyde Park Art Center, December 2016

Crafty Planner, Podcast guest, Episode 88, October 10, 2016.

Root and Star, The In Between, Issue 3, May/June 2016

Food and Wine Magazine Online, Best Artisan Blankets, Julia Heffelfinger, February 2015,

Patchwork  Quilt Tsushin, #181, Sarah Nishiura, profile,  Tokyo, Japan, August 2014

Familiar Bedfellows, exhibition catalogue, Tracey Morrison, LillStreet Art Center, July 2015

Handful of Salt, Chicago Hope: Room 406, Regina Connell, September 16, 2014,

Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making: From Color to Quilting: 10 Design Workshops by Your Favorite Teachers, Lucky Spool Media, June 2014

Not Just Another Pretty Face 2013, Exhibition Catalogue, Hyde Park Art Center, December 2013

Studio KotoKoto blog, Quilts by Sarah Nishiura, Beauty in Pattern, Kathryn Pombriant Manzella, April 14, 2013

World of Quilts, Japan, a supplement to Down Under Quilts, issue 158, June 2013

Handful of Salt, Noticed: Sarah Nishiura, Kathryn Clark, February 17, 2013

Daily Candy, Sarah Nishiura Makes Future Heirlooms, February 13, 2013

Martha Stewart Crafts Department Blog, Inspiration Board : The January Issue of Living! January 7, 2013

Martha Stewart Living Magazine, Our Finds, Liz Logan, January 2013

Chicago Magazine, Domestica, Home and Garden Blog,  Quilter Extraordinaire - Sarah Nishiura, Alice Oglethorpe, December 26, 2012,

 Queen Anne and Magnolia News, The artful business of getting things of beauty to market, Mike Dillon, August 12, 2012

Fibercopia, July 26, 2012

 Studio KotoKoto blog, Elevating the Humble Craft of Quilting, Kathryn Pombriant Manzella, July 24, 2012

Make It Better, Creativity + Passion = Bliss? Making meaning - and maybe happiness - through art, Liz Logan, January 2012

San Jose Mercury News, Complex Threads, Kathryn Loosli Pritchett, October 8, 2011

Staten Island Advance, Virtual Surreality, Michael Fressola, October 11, 2007


School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Homan Square, Guest Speaker, Storytelling and Quilts Class, "Quilts and Untold Stories", July 2018

Northwest Suburban Quilters' Guild, Arlington Heights, Illinois, January 2018.
Lecture and Trunk Show

School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Guest Speaker, Freshman Foundations Class, May 2017

Lakeside Quilting Guild, Guest Speaker in honor of the guild's 5 year anniversary, Chicago, Illinois, May 2017.

Project Prospera, Crafting Cutures, lead artist facilitating a quilt "show and tell" and the making of a community quilt as a part of Threading the Narrative of RE:location , a workshop reflecting on  the craft and histories of African American Quilters and Japanese Americans in Chicago. Midwest Buddhist Temple, Chicago, Illinois, May 2017.

Wisconsin Museum of Quilts and Fiber Arts, Lecture and Trunk show: Sarah Nishiura, Handwork and Design, Cedarburg, Wisconsin, September 2016

Chicago Modern Quilt Guild, Lecture: Quilts and Community, an investigation of the historical and contemporary relationship of quilts and the communities that make and use them. Oak Park, Illinois, April 2016.

Edgewater Library Public Art Community Quilt Project, A community quilt, to be permanently installed at the new LEED certified Edgewater branch of the Chicago Public Library, was made of recycled materials and stitches sewn by the community who use the library. Free lessons on quilt making history and sewing were offered in a series of workshops at local schools, community centers, and other locations in exchange for contributions from the neighborhood. Chicago, Illinois, March - August 2015.

Circle in a Square Community Quilt Installation. Part of the Hyde Park Art Center's Fast Forward, Rewind, Play, Curatorial Lab, approximately 50 alumni of HPAC Quilting classes sewed blocks to be included  in an installation which helped to illustrate the possibilities of a traditional design motif. Combining student work with the work of other local artists who employ media other than textiles, this show highlighted connections that exist between communities, materials, and individual artists. Chicago, Illinois, June 2014.

Martha Stewart American Made: Audience Choice Nominee. October 2013.

Chicago Modern Quilt Guild: Guest Speaker/Trunk Show, Chicago, Illinois, November 2012.

 Lakeside Quilting Guild, Chicago: Guest speaker/Trunk Show, Chicago, Illinois, May 2012

Drummond Montessori Community Quilt Project: Taught 28 4th, 5th, and 6th graders  about the history of quilting, and the  simple hand sewing techniques needed to piece squares which resulted in a full sized classroom quilt. Chicago, Illinois,  February 2012.

Handmade for Japan: Donated a quilt to this international auction of art and craft works. Over $75,000 was raised for Global Giving’s disaster relief efforts in Japan following the 2011 earthquake and tsunami, March 2011.

Hyde Park Art Center Community Quilt Workshop: Designed, organized and led a community quilting event which resulted in a finished quilt which was presented to HPAC board members. Chicago, Illinois, April 2010.

African Festival of the Arts Quilt Talk: Participated in event which brought together local quilters who shared their work and told their stories. Chicago, Illinois,  September 2009.


City of Chicago Public Art Collection, Ozinga Corporation, Capital One Corporation, Brown University, and numerous private collections.