• Issue
  • Jan 02, 2024

Fukushima: Dispatch from an Exclusion Zone

DON’T FOLLOW THE WIND collective at one of the exhibition sites in the Fukushima Exclusion Zone in 2015. Courtesy Don’t Follow the Wind.

On March 11, 13 years will have passed since the triple nuclear meltdown at the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO)-owned Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station in Japan. In response to the ongoing ecological contamination, a collective of artists and cultural workers established “Don’t Follow the Wind,” an exhibition that “opened” on March 11, 2015, inside the exclusion zone—the inaccessible area surrounding the nuclear power plant that is over three times the size of Hong Kong Island. Organized by eponymous collective Don’t Follow the Wind (comprising Chim↑Pom from Smappa!Group, Kenji Kubota, Jason Waite, Eva & Franco Mattes), with contributing artists such as Miyanaga Aiko, Koizumi Meiro, Trevor Paglen, and Taryn Simon, the project cannot be seen in person as the area remains off-limits to the public due to high levels of radiation.