Isao Hashimoto

A Time-Lapse Map of Every Nuclear Explosion Since 1945 – by Isao Hashimoto
1945–1998, 2003
14:24 mins

“This piece of work is a bird’s eye view of the history by scaling down a month length of time into one second. No letter is used for equal messaging to all viewers without language barrier. The blinking light, sound and the numbers on the world map show when, where and how many experiments each country have conducted. I created this work for the means of an interface to the people who are yet to know of the extremely grave, but present problem of the world.

The atomic bombs that the United States dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki at the end of World War II were only the beginning of a much longer “Cold War” among superpowers that enveloped the globe for decades to come. Despite the utter destructiveness and inhumanity of nuclear weapons, nations the world over continue to pursue and develop them. By simply recording the dates, locations, and countries involved in 2,053 nuclear weapon detonations over 53 years, Hashimoto’s time-lapse world map translates the seemingly unimaginable into the unsparingly factual. The sounds and graphics of 1945–1998 hauntingly evoke a video game, one in which nations seem to “play” with the fate of planetary life for the sake of politics.”

Courtesy of the artist.

Isao Hashimoto was born in Kumamoto prefecture, Japan in 1959. After 17 years of working in financial industry as a foreign exchange dealer, studied at Department of Arts, Policy and Management of Musashino Art University, Tokyo. As curator, worked for Lalique Museum, Hakone, Japan for 15 years, and currently working for Hiroshima Peace Culture Foundation.

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