Fukushima nuclear disaster exhibition and talk
Come and meet eyewitnesses to the disaster and look at an exhibition
by Fukushima’s children
Saturday 4th May:
Exhibition 2.30pm-5pm Friends Meeting House, Ashcroft Road, Chesterfield. Talk by the artist between 3pm-5pm
Monday 6th May:
The exhibition will be on display in the Winding Wheel as part of the May Day Gala
The Fukushima incident on 11th March 2011 was, along with Chernobyl, one of the world’s two worst ever nuclear disasters, with a substantial radiation release and the evacuation of many thousands of people. The on-going consequences are affecting health, destroying the local economy and agriculture and making houses and land almost worthless. Whereas the German government and others have decided to phase out nuclear power, the UK government is currently planning to build new nuclear power stations and to subsidise EDF (a French Company mainly owned by the French government) by agreeing a guaranteed high price for their nuclear energy for the next 40 years. In the event of a serious accident in the UK, what would all this mean for you and your family?
This talk, discussion and exhibition is an opportunity to ask questions and hear from two eyewitnesses: Mitsuko Sonoda and Geoff Read were living in Fukushima at the time of the nuclear disaster, and self-evacuated with their son, then 8. They returned to live in Fukushima for several months, and are now living back in the UK. The exhibition enables you to meet many of the children affected through their artwork and portraits.
Mitsuko Sonoda is a Japanese woman who since the disaster has been active in finding and sharing information about radiation contamination and especially food safety. She has actively lobbied educational authorities and local government in Japan to provide school meals with as close to zero radiation as possible, and to take seriously possible risks to children from long term exposure to low-level radiation, including from play. She has also communicated with many evacuees from high radiation areas in Fukushima and further afield, and has spoken on the above subjects to elected representatives and officials from the Japanese national and local governments, and to the media.
Geoff Read is an English social artist who lobbied in Japan in the early days of the disaster for more families to be evacuated, and subsequently worked with 100 children from Fukushima on collaborative portraits, where the children created an image, into which he drew their portraits according to their instructions. Some are accompanied by words from the children.