Chernobyl Legacy: Paul Fusco
Posted on March 4, 2009
I awake and suddenly have the need to see this short documentary about Chernobyl. I have no idea why, but the need to see it, again, is overwhelming.
Phone in hand, scrolling to You Tube, typing in F-U-S-C-O…
Up it comes. I’ve seen it, heard it, watched it, many, many times before, but I need to see it again.
The photographs are powerful, as powerful perhaps as any I have ever seen, and the subject matter is horrific. The phone fades to black and I find myself alone, in the dark, wondering why this happened.
2:30 AM Still awake.
3:30 AM Still awake.
There is something bubbling inside of me, and frankly I find it somewhat disturbing. I feel like getting up, getting out, into the world and unleashing this bubbling need. But the problem is I don’t know where, or how, or why.
I think anyone who works as a documentary photographer has an overwhelming need to record the world around them, and I’m no exception. I think all of us want to help, to show, to illustrate, illuminate and also leave OUR personal mark on the world.
For me, Fusco’s piece is so powerful, not just because of the images, but also due to his narrative. His anger, his passion is palpable, and you cannot deny that this project was, “just another story” for him. He has a personal stake in this place and these people.
Recently I was in New York, working on a series of portrait shoots, and ended up a photo event. As I walked through the crowd, which was tight, he walked past me. I’m not sure I even saw him. Suddenly I was in a bubble and I was looking at his photographs in my mind. That is the power of great photography.
Fusco has done many other projects, and if you haven’t seen his work, or his projects you should check them out.