My desire to create art comes from my search for the meaning of our existence. I use my artwork as a key to understand others and myself. The most precious thing in my life is the growth process. Art is my guide and mentor....

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Peace Walks and Commemoration of Nuclear Disasters

Every year in March, I recall the nuclear incidents at Fukushima and Three Mile Island.  There is an annual peace walk in March to commemorate the 2011 Fukushima disaster led by the Buddhist nun Jun Yasuda with the Grafton Peace Pagoda.

I have been interested in “peace walks” since 2014. Recently, I joined the silent rally ”NO BASES. NO WAR: No U.S. foreign military bases in Okinawa, Korea, Philippines and beyond” on February 24th. I reunited with peace walkers. I was handed a flyer about their annual March peace walk. Jun-san, invited me to participate in the walk and I decided on the spot to do so. My photos of the walkers were selected for a group exhibition called Resistance. 

I was anxious about walking long distances it turned out that I could keep up. I only participated for two days but that was enough to cultivate trust in the other walkers by eating, sleeping and walking together. My body and mind became warm by walking with everyone.   I felt spring in the footprints that remained in the snow covering the sidewalks. It was a special experience that showed me the meaning of the words "speed of trust" that I had heard at the meeting called “BUDDHIST ACTION: MORALS, VISION, JUSTICE” held at the Union Theological Seminary on February 3 rd.

I don’t have a religion but I have been feeling the importance of listening to my own voice and establishing trust relationships with others. It is necessary to have places to connect to diverse peoples’ voices. March 2019 is the 40th anniversary of the Three Mile Island incident. I hope to hold art exhibitions in order to raise public awareness about that event. I am looking for collaborators. Please contact me if you are interested in this project. 

Water Walk for Life For a Nuclear Free world

March 1st, Thursday through March 11, Sunday
11days - 140 miles: Prayer Walk from Grafton, NY to Indian Point Nuclear Power Plant, Peekskill, N.Y. 
In solidarity with Water Protectors of Standing Rock and in commemoration of the 7th Anniversary of the Fukushima Disaster.                                                                                                                           For the first time I walked a long distance: twenty-four miles in only two days. We walked from Latham Circle to Knolls Atomic Laboratory, Niskayuna to Schenectady on Saturday March 3rd, and prayed in front of the laboratory and nearby contaminated rivers. 

The next day we were praying front of a vast vacant land surrounded by fences which is called a superfund site. It is a site contaminated with depleted uranium fuel pellets in a residential area near Albany. A resident appeared and testified that many of his neighbors have various cancers, and his skull contains 11% Depleted Uranium by being exposed. The United States Environmental Protection Agency decontaminated the place. However there is still radioactive contamination in this neighborhood. The Army Bureau is planning to build a park in this location.

Photo by Yuriko Yamaki

Art, Music, Meditation

March 5th, Monday 6:30-8:45pm
2 W. 64th St. NYC 
Hosted by NYC Grassroots Alliance 

While showing my images I talked about my hometown Yaita city and Shioya town where became the candidate site for nuclear disposal in Japan. Keiko Koshimistu announced "Anti-Nuke Power Art" Exhibition. Other Speakers : REV. DR. T. Kenjitsu Nakagaki and Alice Slater

Women in the Heights - Resistance

March 8, Thursday -28, Wednesday 

Opening Reception: March 8, Thursday 6:30- -8:30pm 
Closing and Artist Talk: March 28, Wednesday  6:30-8:30pm 
Rio II Gallery: 583 Riverside Drive, NYC
Curated by Andrea Arroyo
Presented by the Northern Manhattan Arts Alliance

My work "under this sky : peace walkers" was selected. My talked about my experience of participating the peace walk.

7 years After the Fukushima Nuclear Disaster  
Historical Analysis and Current Challenges 

Saturday March10 6:30pm
Maryhouse: 55 East 3rd St. NYC between 1st and 2nd Ave.
Hosted by Manhattan Project Nuclear Free World

I helped to organise this event. I met Hiroko Aizawa at the symposium of "Nuclear disaster in the world" in Tokyo last year. She is a journalist living in Fukushima. Kyoko Sato is conducting a multi-year study on nuclear governance in Japan and the United States. It was a great opportunity to hear of their informative resources. They came to research about Indian Point. Indian Point Safe Energy Coalition had related event on March 11.

Shioya town: the candidates sites for disposal of nuclear waste.

Anti-Nuke Power Art 
Sunday March 11, 12:00-10:00pm
Opening Reception: March 11, Sunday, 6:00pm~10:00pm.
A&G International Gallery
175 Maplewood Avenue Bogota, NJ 07603
(201) 952-2617 by appointment only

My work "under this sky: Nuclear waste issues” was exhibited. I am involved in activities to bring the Chernobyl method to Japan. I organised to have skype talk with Toshio Yanagihara who is our representative and lawyer to explain our activities.

Exposure to Radiation: X Years part 2

Sunday April 1, 6:00pm 
Hills Learning
50 East 42nd Street – Suite 900
(Entrance and Building Name is 315 Madison Avenue)
New York, NY 10017

Director Ito is making Part 3 film that plans to screen this fall. It was a promotion screening to get some support and advise. I thought this movie is a key to connect Japan and the United States nuclear issues.

Exposure to Radiation:Post X Years 
65 min, Documentary 
Directed by Hideaki Ito

A sequel to the documentary film, "X Years Later (2012)" that gathered topics by covering the influence of the nuclear tests conducted by the US in the Pacific. New facts are emerging one after another, in front of director Hidetori Ito who had been interviewing in Muroto City, Kochi Prefecture. The survivor of the fishing boat who saw the previous work started up, and hearing survey started by searching for the survivors. 

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