2020 Peace memorial Hall Special Exhibition
A Tale of Two Brothers Across Time
―Hiroshima Artist Gorō Shikoku and the Diary of Naoto on His Deathbed―
Venue: Hiroshima National Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims B1F, Temporary
Exhibition Area
Period: January 1―December 29, 2020
Gorō Shikoku (1924-2014) was an artist who devoted all of his talent to plea for an end to war and the abolition of nuclear weapons. The incident that drove him to do so was the end of the short life of his beloved younger brother Naoto (1927-1945), who was killed by the atomic bomb at the age of eighteen.
 The death of his younger brother filled him with the determination to "create paintings on behalf of those who died. To express opposition to war and the abolition of nuclear weapons. Whether that becomes art or not…"
 Near the end of the war, Gorō went to Manchuria and joined the Kwantung Army, while his younger brother Naoto was called to Hiroshima and was working in the city as a member of the security forces. Of the five siblings, the two brothers were the closest. Separated by around one thousand kilometers, they each continued to hope that the other was safe.
 This exhibition reconstructs a dialogue between the two brothers across time, from the day of the atomic bombing until Naoto's death. Mainly based on the diary that Naoto kept on his deathbed, the exhibition also displays the eulogy written by Gorō and his art works.
【Exhibition contents】
(1) Video (approximately 30 minutes in length, shown in a large 3-screen display)
 On August 6, 1945, Naoto Shikoku experienced the atomic bombing in temporary military barracks in Nobori Town, around one kilometer from the hypocenter. Suffering a serious wound to his left leg, he returned home two days later, but despite the earnest efforts of his mother and younger brother to nurse him back to health, he passed away on August 28. Naoto recorded every day of that period in his diary. Gorō learned of his brother's death from the atomic bombing when he returned home after three years of internment in Siberia, and speaks of his feelings to read out the diary as if he were in dialogue with Naoto.
 The actress Midori Kiuchi plays the two roles of Gorō and Naoto, and the narration is provided by the film director and actor Shinya Tsukamoto.
(2) Display on information tablets (available in four languages: Japanese, English, Korean and Chinese)
・Gorō Shikoku left behind many works commemorating his late younger brother. The exhibition includes all six poems that he wrote
for Naoto, including "Requiem for my brother".
・Gorō Shikoku firmly believed that the connection between mother and child, the most primordial element for human beings, is what supports peace, and he continues to paint pictures of the mother and child image. This may be viewed in the Gorō Shikoku Gallery together with works depicting Hiroshima's bridges and others.
(3) Over ten of Gorō Shikoku's actual works are on display.
(4) Talks and other outdoor events are also being planned.

 The exhibition commences from New Year, 2020, and is highly recommended.

(Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims)

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