Born in Tokyo, Niizuma Minoru graduated from the Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music in 1955. From 1955 to 1958 he taught drawing and sculpture at the Seijo School in Tokyo and in 1959 he moved to New York City where he taught at the Brooklyn Museum School of Art from 1964-70 and then at Columbia University. He founded the Stone Institute of New York in 1983 to sponsor international exhibitions.
Solo exhibitions of Niizuma's work have been held at the Seibu Museum in Tokyo in 1976, the Umeda Museum of Modern Art in Osaka in 1977, the Contemporary Sculpture Centers in Tokyo and Osaka in 1979, Galerie Nichido in Tokyo in 1989, and in New York at the Howard Wise Gallery in 1966 and 1968, Gimpel and Weitzenhoffer in 1972-74, 1977, and 1979, and in Los Angeles at the Meckler Gallery in 1983, 1986, and 1989. In 1986 Niizuma had a one-man exhibition in Lisbon, Portugal at the Fundacao Calouste Gulbenkian.