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Japanese Art After Fukushima: Return of Godzilla

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Event: -
Japan's relationship with the 'Nuclear Issue' explored
Japanese Art After Fukushima: Return of Godzilla, RMIT, RMIT Japan, RMIT Gallery, RMIT Exhibition, RMIT Exhibition Melbourne, Japan, Japan Melbourne
RMIT University Gallery Melbourne Campus, 344 Swanston St, Melbourne CBD

"From the moment of my birth, I lived with pain at the centre of my life. My only purpose in life was to find a way to coexist with intense pain."

The above quote by Japanese writer Haruki Murakami is in no small amount reflective of post-War Japan and its relationship all things nuclear.

This brave and bold exhibition by RMIT - that explores well the challenges and confidence in adversity - faced by a brave and bold country, is one of the finer exhibitions going on in Melbourne at the moment.

Japanese Art After Fukushima Return of Godzilla, RMIT, RMIT Japan, RMIT Gallery, RMIT Exhibition, RMIT Exhibition Melbourne, Japan, Japan Melbourne, Ken Julia Yonetani
Manabu Ikeda, Untitled, Photo by Miyajima Kei, (c)IKEDA Manabu. Courtesy Mizuma Art Gallery, Tokyo


Most people know Japan is the only nation to have experienced the force of a nuclear bomb(s). Occurring during World War 2, the two bombs dropped by now modern day ally the United States' on Nagasaki and Hiroshima has had a sizable impact on post-War Japan's viewpoint, both of itself and the wider world. Yet, perhaps not as well known is the 'national conversation' that has occurred in the Land of the Rising Sun since events of 2011.

This to say, in the past century, Japan has twice had to undergo a rebuilding of the national spirit, as a result of dealing with the 'nuclear issue', both after 1945 and in 2011.

Japanese Art After Fukushima Return of Godzilla, RMIT, RMIT Japan, RMIT Gallery, RMIT Exhibition, RMIT Exhibition Melbourne, Japan, Japan Melbourne, Ken Julia Yonetani
Radioactive (2012). Courtesy of Ken & Julia Yonetani and Fehily Contemporary


The latter's earthquake and tsunami saw operational issues arise at a number of nuclear power plants in Japan - to the point where technicians and engineers were dangerously exposing themselves to radiation inside the plant in order to save others - and the impact on Japan in its aftermath is the core focus of this exhibit, as informed no less by the experience of World War 2 and the decades since.

All up, this exhibition represents a great look into the stoic strength and optimism of a people whom have had to confront challenges of a national scale of immense size and difficulty. Whether you are a bonafide enthusiast of all things in Japan culture - or perhaps have found a greater interest in other countries/cultures elsewhere - there are lessons for anyone, or any nation and identity; on offer from a visit to this exhibit.

Japanese Art After Fukushima: a sterling showcase at a great gallery.
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Why? A exhibition that provides a fascinating insight into the cultural thought of one of the world's most intriguing nations.
When: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, 11am-5pm, Wednesday 11am-7pm, Saturday 12pm-5pm, Closed Sundays and public holidays
Phone: 9925 1717
Where: RMIT University Melbourne Campus Gallery, 344 Swanston St Melbourne VIC 3000
Cost: Admission is free
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