Fukushima Future, mixed media on paper, 50 x 42 cm
This work is a personal response to the events at TEPCO's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.
I am particularly struck by the depersonalisation of the elderly and infants receiving radiation screening.
One minute you're a mum going shopping. A piece of technology reacts when placed near you or your child by an anonymous masked figure wearing a white-cowled blue-striped jump-suit. Next minute, through no fault or choice of your own, your social status changes from 'shopper' to that of 'public safety risk' and 'medical case'.
I had a similar sense a couple of years back when i was flying to Europe and the swine flu panic was in full swing. At Asian airports everyone was running round in white surgical masks.
At every international airport i passed through a temperature scanner. If the device were to detect a fever, i would have been pulled out of line and marched off somewhere to enter a traveller’s limbo.
The situation is even more pronounced now with backscatter X-ray security scanners for airport passenger screening. The assurances law enforcment agencies gave, that the images would not and could not be stored turned out to be false.
Depersonalized, de-humanised images of travellers stripped of all dignity and privacy in the name of preventing terrorism flicker off screens.
The State has turned on its own citizens, airlines on their own customers, all in the name of “public safety”.
Meanwhile, helicopter gunships loose their canons at mere moving images on their sensor screens, people as Nintendo targets, as in the case of the recent Bagdad attack on driver (Saeed Chmagh) and photographer (Namir Noor-Eldeen) employed by the Reuters news service
Each in our own way, we all have a Fukushima future.