Hiroshima Appeals 1983

Hiroshima Appeals 1983
Design: Yusaku Kamekura Title: Burning Butterflies

More Details in Japanese


Comment from Designer

I concentrated on producing a poster for Hiroshima Appeals on pure, neutral grounds; a poster divorced from politics, philosophy and religion. I also sought to stay clear of conventional expressions such as the vaguely antinuclear calls for peace that have predominated in posters of the past and, if at all possible, to create an antinuclear poster that approached the issue from a new perspective.
I made a small sketch of my idea and gave it to the talented illustrator, Akira Yokoyama. Yokoyama listened to my ideas and came back to me with an illustration a month later. My first thought on seeing this first illustration, however, was that it lacked force and, having devoted a day to pondering the problem, I concluded that further prompting was needed. I explained to Yokoyama that I wanted the flames to take center stage and that the beautiful butterflies were to serve as enticement for the fire. Yokoyama was reluctant to tamper with his original flames, but I asked him to take his courage in both hands and make them stronger. The revised illustration reached me two days later. The flames were a little stronger, but I wanted a still stronger visual. Just as I had envisaged, the butterflies had been drawn in exquisite detail and the illustration was pregnant with pathos. I was seeking to create real fear by giving visionary expression to the menace of nuclear arms in the form of beauty going down and being extinguished by flames. To engender this sense of fear, the poster needed to have a strong impact and I achieved this by trimming and enlarging Yokoyama’s illustration and intensifying the flames in the printing process.
Each year, a designer is asked to produce a poster for Hiroshima. Being asked to produce the inaugural poster was a heavy duty, but I am happy with the result and proud to be its originator.

Hiroshima Appeals Poster Campaign

In 1983, the Japan Graphic Designers Association Inc. (JAGDA) and the Hiroshima International Cultural Foundation announced their collaboration on a project focusing on the theme “Hiroshima’s Spirit” and launched a poster campaign with the goal of promoting peace at home and abroad. The first poster, entitled “Burning Butterflies”, was created by Yusaku Kamekura, the president of JAGDA at the time. Designers affiliated with JAGDA produce one poster each year.

Size: B1 (728 x 1,030mm)