Photos by Tohoku’s elderly on show

by Satoko Kawasaki

Staff Writer

Aiming to draw attention to the daily lives of the tsunami-hit northeast, an exhibition of photographs taken by residents of Otsuchi, Iwate Prefecture, began Friday in Tokyo, featuring their daily lives after the tragic twin disasters.

Titled “Otsuchi no Takarabako” (“A Treasure Box of Otsuchi”), the exhibit displays a total of 34 pictures taken by elderly citizens of things they treasure. They learned how to use digital cameras at workshops held by local newspaper Otsuchi Mirai Shimbun, which was established last August.

The exhibit organizers said they hope it will help raise continued interest in the devastated Tohoku region, as they believe the amount of news coverage about the area is declining as time passes.

Takako Matsumura, one of the residents whose work is on display, said the power of the 9.0-magnitude temblor on March 11, 2011, led her to anticipate the huge waves heading toward shore, and she managed to escape to a nearby hill with her husband, as well as a cat they have kept for 14 years..

The exhibit will be held until Monday at Gallery Yasashii Yokan in Shinagawa Ward, Tokyo.