The photographs in this special exhibition offer a detailed look at Hiroshima in the first months after the bombing. The dead and injured were still lying on the streets and in relief stations. People were still searching for loved ones or assisting the rescue and relief work. Some had come to survey the damage. What we see are people grieving and praying for the deceased while doing their best to rebuild the city and their lives.
More than fifty people took photographs of Hiroshima after the bomb was dropped and before the end of 1945. Their photographs show various times and places. Thanks to these photographs and the recordkeeping of the people who took them, we have some idea of what was happening in Hiroshima after the bombing. These are photographs that we instinctively want to turn away from, but if we look at them carefully, there is much we can learn. What can we take away? By standing and staring at the truth, we return to the point of departure, the spirit of Hiroshima.
The photographs in this exhibition are just a few of the photographs in our collection. Many could not be included in this exhibition, but most victims were never photographed. As we stand in front of these photos, we should deliberately try to remember the unseen people and the horrors never recorded. These, too, are the spirit of Hiroshima.