Thursday 7th May,
8mm Film screening
1. “Talk about the Past”
Led by 20th Century Archive and Sendai's Hidenori Sakamoto
2. “Bringing Back Namie”
Film Screening,Directed by Daisuke Miyoshi
In Shinnonome Golden week greeted us with good weather. Here at the Highrise buildings and apartments, which house the displaced people and families from the Fukushima earthquake, roughly 30 residents and volunteers came together, on the first floor, to talk about their past memories and watch the screening of “Bringing Back Namie”.
It begun with an opening speech from Tokto University of the Arts' Professor Junji Ito, and Sakamoto from 20th Century Archive Sendai gave a presentation for talking about the past. Time flew by as everyone bloomed like flowers whilst they conversed about their thoughts and memories. Sakamoto also presented old tools and objects that were used by previous generations, some even dated back to Pre-war Japan. One of these was a plant called “Saikachi”, which is part of the pea family, and it was used for cleaning things before soap was introduced.
As the first part of the screening of “Bringing Back Namie” begun expressions of recognition could be seen on everyone's faces, as the familiar scenes of their hometown was projected in front of them. The second part of the screening featured a 8mm film from 20th Century Archive Sendai showcasing scenes of Namie in the 50s and 60s. As the images of Namie played they resembled nothing of the current flattened landscape that the earthquake had created, instead delightful scenes of weddings, children playing and festivals evoked excited chatter within the audience.
“I've come to realise the bond between this religion and heritage”
“It was a simple life, no luxuries”
“Farming was not the biggest part of life”
“In order to live in the same village we really had to help eachother out”
“Building a new Namie without looking back”
They also gave a presentation about the process of the collecting and editing of the material, as well as how they chose venues. After the screening they all had a chance to have some tea and mingle with each other, and it was clear they had more determination than ever to being their journey towards a new future and rebuilding their community; they also hope that people from areas surrounding Fukushima would get an opportunity to have an event like this one.
I would also like to express my gratitude to Takahasi and Misawa for their help in making the screening at Shinonome possible; and of course to all participants.
Thank you very much.
Daisuke Miyoshi (Video Artist / Lecturer in the Department of Design at Tokyo University of the Arts)