Kengiro Azuma was a Japanese Italian sculptor, painter, and teacher.
吾妻 兼治郎 Azuma Kenjirō
|Born||March 12, 1926|
|Died||October 15, 2016 (aged 90)|
Azuma was born March 12, 1926 in Yamagata, Japan to a family of bronze artisans. When he was 17, Azuma joined the Imperial Japanese Navy as a Kamikaze pilot, but the war ended before the time came for him to sacrifice himself. World War II and the discovery of the emperor's humanity had a great impact on the Japanese people. For Azuma personally, it created a spiritual void that pushed him towards art.
From 1949 to 1953, Azuma studied sculpture at the University of Tokyo. In 1956 he moved to Italy after receiving a scholarship from the Italian government. Azuma studied at the Brera Academy in Milan where he was a student and eventually the art assistant of Marino Marini (sculptor). In 1966, his work was exhibited as part of "The New Japanese Painting and Sculpture" at the MoMa in New York.
Azuma lived and worked in Milan for most of his career. He continued as Marino Marini's art assistant until Marini's death in 1980. From 1980 to 1990 he was a professor at the Nuova Accademia di Belle Arti. In 2015, he installed a permanent sculpture, it:MU 141, in the public square in front of the Cimitero Monumentale di Milano.
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