Junko Azukawa grew up in Toyama, Japan at the base of the central Japanese Alps, a region famous for the natural beauty of its landscape.
She started learning traditional Japanese calligraphy - Shodo at the age of five and has experienced the vast possibilities that calligraphy and Japanese ink painting - Sumie can express with just simple monotone brush strokes.
Junko’s calligraphy teacher Shiro Aoyagi, the founder of the Hokuriku Shodo Academy and also one of Japan’s most respected calligraphy masters, demonstrated his artwork at the National Gallery of Victoria, Australia in 2008 and his work is now represented in the NGV’s collection.
Since becoming a resident of Melbourne, Australia in 2005, Junko has brought her unique artistic talents and outlook to the Australian art scene. She started teaching Japanese calligraphy and painting with children and adults at numerous schools and organisations and also exhibited at a number of galleries in Australia and Japan. One of her artwork is also now in the NGV’s collection. In 2011 Junko started to use her art form with mental illness patients as a form of therapy with great compassion. She is also sought after in commercial design work for her skillful brushwork from bottle label design to restaurant interior design. She has had her illustrations published in the novel; NAVIGATIO authored by Australian writer Patrick Holland in 2014.
Junko is committed in sharing her Japanese culture in Australia. Together with a lifelong study of traditional calligraphy and ink painting, Junko has found peace and appreciation deep within and loves sharing with her audience the intimate relationship between mother nature and human nature through her brush.
2017 - present Melbourne Art Class - Japanese ink art teacher.
2015 - present Living & Learning Nillumbik - Japanese ink art teacher.
2012 - present Princes Hill Community Centre - Japanese ink art teacher.
2011 - 2013 Community Mental Health - Japanese ink art therapist.
2009 - present Box Hill Community Arts Centre - Sumie teacher.
2008 - 2010 Centre for Adult Education - Japanese calligraphy and painting teacher.
2005 - present SUMIDO Japanese Ink Art and Experience - Artist.
Public collection & commission
National Gallery of Victoria - "Bamboo grove and the dragonfly", 180 St Kilda Rd, Melbourne, VIC, Australia.
Stokehouse St Kilda Beach - Mural artwork, 30 Jacka Blvd, St Kilda, VIC, Australia.
Giorgios Restaurant Cafe Bar - Mural artwork, High St & Glenferrie Rd, Armadale, VIC, Australia.
The East Pantry cafe restaurant - Mural artwork, 14 Centreway, Keilor East, VIC, Australia.
Man Mo Chinese seafood restaurant - Mural artwork, Shops G13-G15, WTC Wharf Precinct,18-38 Siddeley St, Melbourne, VIC, Australia.
Teppankai Japanese restaurant - Mural artwork, 30 Bray St, South Yarra, VIC, Australia.
Urban Grooves Lounge Cafe - Mural artwork, 99 Grimshaw St, Greensborough, VIC, Australia.
Max on Hardware Pizzeria Bar Restaurant - Mural artwork, 54-58 Hardware Lane, Melbourne, VIC, Australia.
Fuso - calligraphy and illustration for associated advertising material.
KIRIN Cider - Calligraphy and illustration for label design and associated advertising.
KIRIN Beer - Sumi brush artwork for KIRIN identity and label design.
Sun Rice - Calligraphy and illustrations for package design and catalogue.
RUNNING HORSE Winery Hunter Valley - Illustrations for label design.
DAIWA FOOD - Calligraphy for Takuan pickles and Go rice package design.
NAVIGATIO by Patrick Holland - Book illustrations. ISBN: 9781921924774
LEXUS - Calligraphy for 2011 product catalogue.
Jun 2018 "The creatives keeping Japan's inspiring artisan culture alive" The Sydney Morning Herald.
Jun 2015 "Power of Japanese Art" Nichigo Press.
Aug 2014 "Junko Azukawa Art Exhibition" Nichigo Press.
20 Dec 2013 "Cool Japan at National Gallery of Victoria" ABC News.
May 2013 "Natural monument to cool restaurant" AGE.
Jan 2010 "Junko Azukawa Interview", GO GO Melbourne.
Nov 2009 "Junko Azukawa Interview", JAMS.TV.
Oct 2009 "Junko Azukawa Interview", KIRIN presents GO FONT UR SELF*.
May 2009 "Join in Matsudo Week celebrations", Whitehorse News.
Nov 2008 "The Art of the Brush: Australian Artists & the Painting Tradition of the East"
Essay by Dr Gary Hickey, University of Melbourn.
8 Jul 2008 "Japanese Artist's Master Stroke", Moreland Community News.
Nov 2008 North Japan Press Prize - Hokuriku Japanese Calligraphy Exhibition, Japan.
Nov 2007 Best New Artist Prize - Hokuriku Japanese Calligraphy Exhibition, Japan.
Nov 2006 Selected Prize - Hokuriku Japanese Calligraphy Exhibition, Japan.