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The long shadow of Chernobyl

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Captivating images of National Geographic photographer Gerd Ludwig’s nine visits to Chernobyl in 20 years tell us tragic stories of the life of the victims, the Exclusion Zone and the abandoned city of Pripyat.

Ludwig ventures deeper into the belly of the beast than any other photographer, repeatedly documenting the destroyed reactor #4, which will disappear under a New Safe Confinement for at least 100 years. Bordering the site of the worst nuclear desaster to date, the abandoned city of Pripyat might face a similar destiny as authorities decide what to do with it.

“As engaged photographers“, says Ludwig, „we often report about human tragedies in the face of disaster, and take our cameras to uncharted areas with the understanding that our explorations are not without personal risk. We do this out of a deep commitment to important stories told on behalf of otherwise voiceless victims.“

An essay by Mikhail Gorbachev, the last head of state of the Soviet Union, accompanies Gerd Ludwig’s emotional visual narrative. In 1990 Gorbachev was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. This book is an important body of documentary work in view of the ongoing nuclear desaster in Fukushima 25 years later.

29 x 31 cm, 252 pages, 127 images
English, German, French
Hardcover, Slipcase

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