Junko Morimoto, author, illustrator and Sumi brush painting artist, graduated from Kyoto University of Fine Arts with a major in Western Art. She was art director of the Children's Art studio in Osaka from 1965 to 1971. As well as participating in major art exhibitions in Japan, Morimoto organised the International Children's Exchange Art Exhibition in Osaka with people from many countries including Australia.
Emigrating to Australia in 1982, Morimoto has illustrated many children's picture books, several of which have won awards.
Among her works are My Hiroshima (1987), which recounts her childhood experiences of being in Hiroshima when it was bombed, and The White Crane(1983) which tells of a childless Japanese couple who unexpectedly acquire a daughter after they have rescued a white crane. The White Crane was commended in the Children's Book Council Book of the Year Award (Picture Book of the Year) for 1984, and has been translated into several languages.
More recently, Morimoto illustrated Run Damon, Run! (2000), which was written by Anne Bower Ingram and was set in Greece, and The Two Bullies(1997), translated from the original Japanese, which was awarded the 1998 Children's Book of the Year Award (Picture Book).
Morimoto has contributed to exhibitions of her work on numerous occasions in Australia, Japan and Italy. She is also a calligrapher, and she produced the cover art and calligraphy for Canadian author Eleanor Coerr's Mieko and the Fifth Treasure.
The Two Bullies1997single work picture book children's fable 'Ni-ou is the strongest fellow in Japan. No one can beat him. But that's not enough. When he hears that there is a strong man called Dokkoi in China, Ni-ou wants to beat him too. So he goes looking for a fight.' (Source: Back cover)
Kojuro and the Bears1987single work picture book children's This story describes the hardships and sorrows of a bear hunter. Kojuro comes to regret that he must kill the bears in order to make a living. Eventually, the wheel turns and his life is ended by a bear. (Source:From the book)
A Piece of Straw1985single work picture book children's fable Yohei was a kind but poor man who went every day to pray at the shrine. On the hundredth day the wind blew and told Yohei to take heed of that which first came to mind. As he left the shrine Yohei fell down. As he was getting up he noticed that he was holding a piece of straw. He tied a horsefly to the end and continued on his way. He swapped the straw for two mandarines then swapped those for two rolls of silk and so on until he eventually swapped a horse for a house and land belonging to a Samurai who had been summoned urgently to the Emperor. Yohei and his new wife threw a party for all the villagers to celebrate their good fortune.(Source: From Book)