Born in Nagano, Michiko obtained a BA in Sociology at Meiji Gakuin University, Japan in 1983, and an MA in Photography at Columbia College, Chicago, U.S.A, in 1987. She was curator of Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography from 1989 to 2002, the Museum of Contemporary Art from 2002 to 2006. From since 2006 to 2018 she has been Chief Curator of the Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography. She is now Vice Director of the Bridgestone Museum of Art, Ishibashi Foundation in Tokyo.
Kasahara has curated exhibitions including, MOT annual 2005: Life Actually, the works of contemporary Japanese women, at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, 2005 and Mother’s Ishiuchi Miyako, for the Japanese pavilion at the 2005 Venice Biennnale, Love’s Body, Art in the Age of AIDS, 2010.
She has received a number of awards for essays and in 2002 was given The Photographic Society of Japan Award.