Noriko Shinohara was born in 1952 in Japan, and moved to New York in 1972 to study art, where she soon met her husband, the artist Ushio Shinohara. The Shinoharas are most recently known from the Academy Award-nominated documentary Cutie and the Boxer. This documentary explores the history of the couple's often tumultuous marriage and their lives as artists.
Noriko has worked as an artist for many years, but the work she is best known for is her "Cutie and Bullie" series that began in 2006. This series includes drawings, paintings, and prints that feature her characters Cutie and Bullie and are based on herself and Ushio. All of the Cutie and Bullie works are truthful to the point of discomfort and follow Cutie's early trials of being married to an alcoholic older man and the difficulty of being an artist in New York. The scenes inspired by recent events show Cutie's triumphs as her work and worth are finally being realized, by both herself and the outside world. Noriko's work has been exhibited frequently in New York and Japan, and is part of the permanent collections of the Davis Museum and Cultural Center at Wellesley College.