In March 2011, Carlos Ayesta and Guillaume Bression discovered, hallucinated, the no man’s land around the Fukushima nuclear power plant, a region largely destroyed by the earthquake and tsunami that caused a very serious nuclear disaster. With a radiation suit and a pass, they crossed for the first time in 2011 the checkpoint located 20 kilometers from the nuclear power plant. Time suddenly stopped. In the middle of the almost deserted cities, a few rare inhabitants, lost, dazed. Carlos Ayesta and Guillaume Bression advance, eyes fixed on their dosimeter: “so this is a nuclear accident”. Six months later, the two men transform this shock into an artistic project. Retracing Our Steps is a long-term assignment that has led them repeatedly and for six years in the forbidden area of Fukushima. With each trip, they unfolded one by one the consequences of this nuclear catastrophe: the cities and the countryside emptied of their inhabitants, the fear of the radioactivity, the difficult question of the return, the nature which again takes its rights and the astronomical quantities of contaminated waste.
The photographic work of Carlos Ayesta and Guillaume Bression is on the border between fiction and documentary approach. Their project, born of a need to testify, is a strong contribution to the story of a historic disaster. With a contemporary questioning of the image thanks to staging in the broad sense, they want to show all the facets of the real, those that nobody had ever dared show us.
Carlos Ayesta & Guillaume Bression – Retracing Our Steps
September 8 – October 28, 2018
4 place d’Austerlitz 67000 Strasbourg, France
09 83 41 89 55