Popular Protest in Post War Japan: The Antiwar Art of Shikoku Gorō

Hiroshima Sketches

In Hiroshima Sketches (1985), Shikoku Gorō introduces the city of Hiroshima through a series of drawings and brief essays. The cover of the small paperback book features a watercolor close-up of the ruined brick walls and skeletal top of the Atomic Bomb Dome (genbaku dōmu), a widely recognized symbol of nuclear warfare. Inside the book, Shikoku devotes only a few pages to the renowned Peace Park surrounding the Atomic Bomb Dome, and instead focuses visually on lively contemporary scenes of shops, train stations, festivals, street scenes and more throughout the city of Hiroshima.  Shikoku emphasizes the many bridges that make the city--spread across a delta of six rivers and surrounded by green mountains--not only livable but pleasing. 

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