Fukushima City, August 15, 2011.
The grass at the Village of Four Seasons, a city park in the western part of Fukushima City, about 60 km north west of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, was covered by a huge Furoshiki (wrapping cloth) made of many different colored fabrics stitched together. The total area space was approximately 6000 square meters.
An outdoor music festival, free of charge, was being hosted by Project FUKUSHIMA!, an organization founded by three artists acting as joint representatives; Michiro Endo, a musician from Nihonmatsu City, Fukushima Prefecture, Otomo Yoshihide, a musician who had spent his teen years in Fukushima City, and Ryoichi Wago, a poet from and still living in Fukushima City. The heat and humidity that day were typical of summers in the valley city of Fukushima, accompanied by intermittent thunderstorms. Despite the unstable weather conditions however, a total of 13000 people from Fukushima Prefecture and beyond came to the event, while a total of 250,000 people tuned in to DOMMUNE FUKUSHIMA, the Ustream program aired live on the internet. About 200 volunteers supported the event. 25 artists and musicians, including Ryuichi Sakamoto, came to the event pro bono, to each perform their own renditions of the FUKUSHIMA situation on-stage.
I myself am from Fukushima, and having been involved in Project FUKUSHIMA! since its inception, decided to author this report to describe how Project FUKUSHIMA! came into being in response to the earthquake, and the activities that have been conducted over the past year.
Project FUKUSHIMA! Executive Committee