Yasu Shibata was born in Osaka, Japan, in 1968. He received his B.F.A. from Kyoto Seika University, where he studied with the renowned printmaking professor Akira Kurosaki. In 1991 Shibata moved to the United States. He worked for ten years at Tyler Graphics, where he produced prints for artists such as Frank Stella, David Salle, Helen Frankenthaler, and Donald Sultan, using both Japanese and Western woodcut techniques.
Shibata currently works for the New York contemporary print publisher Pace Editions, where he works exclusively in the ukiyo-e style Japanese woodcut technique. He has created limited editions for Chuck Close, Helen Frankenthaler, April Gornik, James Siena, Francesco Clemente, Ghada Amer & Reza Farkhondeh, Qi Zhilong, and Yoshitomo Nara.
Shibata has taught relief printing at Cooper Union since 1998. He has also taught Japanese woodcut workshops at Montclair State University in New Jersey, and at Long Island University in New York.
In his own artwork, Shibata uses the ukiyo-e and reduction woodcut techniques together, layering simple shapes of pigment that radiate intense color.