Photographs by Hans-Christian Schink.
Hatje Cantz, 2013. 132 pp., 61 color illustrations, 11¾x9½".
On March 11, 2011, at 2:46 p.m., the Tohoku region in northeastern Japan experienced the most powerful earthquake ever registered in the country. Its aftermath, a tsunami, leveled a 400-kilometer-long stretch of coastline dotted with cities and villages, while an accident at the nuclear reactor in Fukushima exacerbated a catastrophe of unimaginable scale. One year later, photographer Hans-Christian Schink (born 1961) spent several weeks traveling through the region on a grant from the Villa Kamogawa Kyoto. In Tohoku, Schink combines familiar still photographs of landscapes-in which the destructive power of the wave is only subtly apparent-with images that viscerally translate the full force of the disaster: houses piled on top of each other like toys, industrial buildings reduced to steel skeletons, boats perched on dry land and the concrete walls of quays with deep cracks that testify to the unimaginable strength of the impact.