While F-35 combat aircraft successfully released dummy nuclear bombs at a test exercise in Nevada, Japan announced the purchase of 105 F-35s from the United States. They seem to have forgotten that Japan is the only country victim of nuclear bombing: on August 6, 1945, the B-29 bomber Enola Gay dropped the atomic bomb Little Boy on Hiroshima, and on August 9, 1945, the B-29 bomber Bockscar dropped the nuclear bomb Fat Man on Nagasaki. Both nuclear attacks killed around 200,000 people, and the 4,000-degree Celsius explosion baked their shadows and left their mark on the ground. The shades of victims who lost their lives still lie on the ground.

Yukari Hirano (1984) and Tsubasa Kato (1984), known as Yukari Kato Tsubasa, are artists noted for their collaborative practice involving performance and video. Their representative Pull and Raise/Down (an ongoing series of performances in which large scale wooden structures replicating buildings or other monuments are pulled up/pulled down from/to the ground using ropes by a large number of participants) relies on spontaneous participation. Since completing a project in Fukushima after the 2011 disaster, their work has become more satirical, which plays with social boundaries. Their performance-related installations create an environment that bridges the gap between participants in the performance and viewers and creates a channel for multiple subjectivities to interact across space and time.

Organized by Estudio Pedro Reyes
in collaboration with ICAN

ARTISTS AGAINST THE BOMB is an exhibition of posters that call for universal nuclear disarmament. Each made by a different artist, the group comprises historical and newly
commissioned works that detail a cultural history of disarmament movements and evidence the diversity of ways in which artists have expressed the need to ban the bomb. ARTISTS AGAINST THE BOMB is designed for maximum agility and economic effectiveness, relying on a black and white palette both for its impact and ease o reproduction. We asked artists to ensure their works can exist on a variety of supports, ephemera such as posters, postcards, billboards, banners, flags, t-shirts and social media posts, as we aspire to achieve the widest possible circulation of this message.

ARTISTS AGAINST THE BOMB presents the works of foundational conceptual artists Art & Language; pop hero, Keith Haring; legendary feminists, Guerrilla Girls; performance artists Regina José Galindo and Pussy Riot’s Nadya Tolokonnikova, as well
as eminent sculptors Magdalena Abakanowicz and Isamu Noguchi. It also features indelible photographs by Robert Del Tredici and Ken Domon alongside protest graphics from social movements such as the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND), founded in 1958 and still active; the epic Peace Squadron and Visual Artists Against Nuclear Arms (VAANA); and the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF). Additionally, it examines how stories are told, from the theater of Bread and Puppet to films like Stanley Kubrick’s Dr. Strangelove and Marguerite Duras / Alain Resnais’ Hiroshima Mon Amour, to an unexpected survey of literature, from an early
anticipation of an atomic bomb, first envisioned by H.G. Wells in 1918, to the viscera spoken word poetry of Jayne Cortez.

ARTISTS AGAINST THE BOMB, organized by Estudio Pedro Reyes in collaboration with the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), is presented on the occasion of the Second Meeting of State Parties to the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) held at the United Nations in 2023.

To organize en exhibition of ARTISTS AGAINST THE BOMB please contact curatorial assistant Verana Codina.

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