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Yukiyo Kawano, Fat Man folded (The 1945 Oregonian)

Yukiyo Kawano
born 1974 Hiroshima, Japan; lives Portland, Oregon
Fat Man folded (The 1945 Oregonian)
Floating Lanterns

newspaper, kakisibu-dye, adhesive, bamboo grass, wire, fabric (polyester), Polyethylene rod, nylon rope
10 x 5 x 5 ft. (Fat Man)
lent by the artist, © 2020 Yukiyo Kawano
photos by David Greber (left) and CFreedom Photography (below)

The ghostly forms of Kawano’s replicas contrast with the massive physical weight of the actual bombs and the weight of history. The material choice connects the sculptures to Kawano’s own history and illustrates the lasting impact the bombs continue to have, generations later.

Yukiyo Kawano, Fat Man folded

Fat Man is constructed with pages of The Oregonian newspaper from August 1945.

Yukiyo Kawano’s Floating Lanterns were made with repurposed paper lanterns that were used at the floating lantern ceremony held annually at Green Lake in Seattle, Washington on August 6. In 2018 and 2019, Kawano stood on the dock receiving the soaked and used lanterns from cleanup volunteers and envisioned them as bodies with stories to tell. The lanterns were then treated with fermented persimmon dye —an ancient technique used to give materials antibacterial properties as well as thickening and strengthening them. The lanterns were reconstructed and connected with Kawano’s own hair which, as a third generation hibakusha (nuclear bomb survivor), contains DNA affected by radiation.