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Camera Atomica

Camera Atomica

304 pages
Published:   July 3, 2015
Non-Fiction  /  Art & Architecture
Paperback:   9781908966483    $34.95

Photographs have played a crucial role in shaping perceptions of nuclear weapons and nuclear energy. In Camera Atomica, art historian John O’Brian explores the intimate relationship between photography and nuclear events to uncover how the camera lens has shaped public perceptions of the atomic age and its anxieties.

Bringing together both vintage and contemporary photographs that have recorded and, in certain instances, provided motivation for the production of nuclear events, O’Brian travels through history — from the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945 to the triple meltdown at Fukushima Daiichi in 2011.

In this vivid volume, readers will encounter more than 200 images that simultaneously document and raise questions about the contradictory roles of photography during this period. Included are Hiromitso Toyosaki and Shomei Tomatsu’s photographs of hibakusha (individuals exposed to radiation from atomic bombs), David McMillan’s photographs at Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant, and Sandy Skoglund’s darkly humorous Radioactive Cats, along with photographs by Nancy Burson, Edward Burtynsky, Carol Condé and Karl Beveridge, Kenji Higuchi, Richard Misrach, Weegee, and many others.
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John O’Brian has published more than a dozen books. He has taught art history at the University of British Columbia since 1987. Other contributors include Julia Bryan-Wilson, HIromitsu Toyosaki, Blake Fitzpatrick, Iaian Boyle and Gene Ray, Douglas Copeland, and Susan Schuppli.