The Japan Cartoonists Association (JCA) has announced that manga creator Eiko Hanamura passed away on December 3, 2020. She was 91 years old at the time of her passing. While the JCA’s announcement only mentions an unspecified illness, NHK reported that Hanamura passed away at her home due to multiple organ dysfunction syndrome.
Hanamura was a pioneer of shojo manga, as well as manga for older women. She made her debut in 1959 with the manga “Murasaki no Yōsei” (Purple Fairy) in the rental manga book Niji. She drew the Kiri no Naka no Shōjo (The Girl in the Fog) manga in 1968, which TBS adapted into the Katei no Himitsu live-action series in 1975. From there, she wrote a number of other other manga titles, including Hanakage no Hito (A Woman in the Shadow of Flowers), Hanabira no Tō (A Steeple of Flower Petals), and a manga adaptation of Genji Monogatari (The Tale of Genji).
She was a prolific artist, writing numerous other serialized and one-shot manga, and has contributed new illustrations to various projects and works most recently as 2020. She was a director of the Japan Cartoonists Association, and was a permanent member of France’s Société Nationale des Beaux-Arts.