Guest Post: Don’t Follow the Wind – book out by alumnus Jason Waite

Pictured: Jason Waite

On the 10th anniversary of the ongoing Fukushima nuclear disaster, Don’t Follow the Wind, a book co-edited by curator Jason Waite, was released.

Jason (MA Art and Politics, 2010) wrote to Goldsmiths with an update on his latest project.


Jason is part of the eponymous collective of artists and curators working with residents displaced by the Fukushima nuclear disaster that has commissioned and continued to care for twelve new artworks installed in the former homes of the residents inside the closed radioactive zone surrounding the power station. The artworks are by contemporary artists such as Meiro Koizumi, Ai Weiwei and Trevor Paglen.

The project is called Don’t Follow the Wind and takes the form of an art exhibition that is “open” but inaccessible as the zone is closed to the public. The artworks function as a mnemonic of the durational disaster. The unique challenges of maintaining an exhibition inside an uninhabited radioactive area have led to the collective and former residents to develop new modes of understanding how art can confront a crisis and work to build translocal durational relations.

The twelfth volume of the Critical Spatial Practice series focuses on this project (cover pictured left) – with the recently released book by the same name functioning as a placeholder for the ongoing exhibition. Artist contributions include Ai Weiwei, Chim↑Pom, Nikolaus Hirsch & Jorge Otero-Pailos, Meiro Koizumi, Eva & Franco Mattes, Grand Guignol Mirai, Aiko Miyanaga, Ahmet Öğüt, Trevor Paglen, Taryn Simon, Nobuaki Takekawa and Kota Takeuchi.

The book explores the long-term environmental crisis in the coastal Japanese region through this ongoing, inaccessible exhibition, which maintains traces of human presence amid the fallout of the March 2011 nuclear reactor meltdown that displaced entire towns.

It also includes new texts by feminist theorist Silvia Federici; art historians Noi Sawaragi and Sven Lütticken; and political philosopher Jodi Dean that address the question: What can art do in a continuing catastrophe when destruction and contamination have made living impossible?

Find out more.