In the Wake: Japanese Photographers Respond to 3/11

March 11, 2016—June 12, 2016

The catastrophic earthquake and tsunami that struck northeast Japan on March 11, 2011 and triggered an on-going nuclear crisis has been met with an overwhelming reaction in the arts, marking a profound shift in the contemporary Japanese cultural landscape. Opening five years to the day since 3/11, Japan Society’s presentation of In the Wake reveals a stunning range of photographic responses to the disaster and the artistic paths that lie ahead as Japan continues to rebuild. Experience the power of art to transcend unspeakable tragedy with over 90 photographic works by 17 of Japan’s leading visionaries, including Nobuyoshi Araki, Naoya Hatakeyama, Keizō Kitajima, Lieko Shiga, and Tomoko Yoneda.

This exhibition was organized by the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

Exhibition-related programs will be updated regularly.

$12; students & seniors $10; Japan Society members & children under 16 free.
Admission is free to all on Friday nights, 6–9 pm.

Exhibition-Related Programming

Gallery Talk Series


Select Sundays at 2 PM, through June 12.

Cap off your weekend at Japan Society Gallery with these energetic, 15-minute conversations with leading curators, artists, and specialists. Drop by to hear their unique perspectives on select highlights in the exhibition. Free with admission to the exhibition. Groups are limited to 30, first-come, first-served basis.

  • March 27, 2016: Marilyn Ivy (Professor, Columbia University)
  • April 17, 2016: Takashi Arai (In the Wake artist and 41st Kimura Ihei Award Winner)
  • May 8, 2016: Paul Sternberger (Professor, Rutgers University)
  • May 15, 2016: Vincent Covello (Director, Center for Risk Communication and Fukushima accident expert)
  • June 5, 2016: Gabriel Florenz (Director, Pioneer Works)


We are currently updating our Gallery web store. If you would like to place an order, please contact or call (212) 715-1223. Catalogues can also be purchased at the welcome desk.

Audio Tour

Japan Society Curator of Exhibition Interpretation Michael Chagnon, Ph.D., takes listeners on a guided tour of In the Wake: Japanese Photographers Respond to 3/11. Using highlights from each section, this audio tour provides more context for the works on display. Click here to start.

Related Videos

Selected Works

In the Wake: Japanese Photographers Respond to 3/11 is generously supported by Chris A. Wachenheim, Mr. Wilbur L. Ross, Jr., the Henry Luce Foundation, The Tokyo Club (General Incorporated Association), and the following corporations (as of January 25, 2016):


Japan Society would also like to thank Louis J. Forster, Thierry Porté and Yasko Tashiro, The Japan Foundation, New York, and the following corporations for their generous contributions:


Additional support is provided by Mrs. Jane B. DeBevoise, Noriko Iwase, Yasuhisa Kumada, and Kiyoka Tanaka.

Exhibitions at Japan Society are made possible in part by the Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Endowment Fund, and Friends of the Gallery.

Transportation is assisted by Japan Airlines.

Arts & Culture Lecture Programs are made possible by funding from the Lila Wallace- Reader's Digest Endowment Fund. Additional support is provided by Chris A. Wachenheim and the Sandy Heck Lecture Fund.

Images: In the Wake Installation © Richard Goodbody. Naoya Hatakeyama (b. 1958), 2011.5.2 Takata-chō from the series Rikuzentakata, 2011 Photograph, chromogenic print Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Sophie M. Friedman Fund, 2015.2934© Naoya Hatakeyama / Courtesy Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Yasusuke Ōta (b. 1958), Deserted Town from the series The Abandoned Animals of Fukushima, 2011 Photograph, pigment-based inkjet print © Yasusuke Ota / Courtesy Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Lost & Found Image, © Lily Kesselman.

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