Within the natural environment, and in the areas surrounding cities across the Fukushima prefecture, I have captured the invisible pain of radiation. With an ear to the rhythm of the seasons—in the vein of traditional Japanese engravings—I hoped to capture the fleeting moments inspired by their refined, uncluttered style. Using a pinhole camera, I sought to record the movements of climatic phenomena, and the ever-shifting perceptions of nature.

Long exposure times created a record of the presence of radioactive danger. A dosimeter measured the level of radiation in microSieverts (μSv) received during each exposure, seen in the lower right hand corner of each image.

The process of staggered superimposition created a vibration, a departure from the reality of the subject to reveal the presence of radiation in the image. This process reinvents and twists the very landscape, leading to a sort of vertigo, or malaise, linked to the quivering of the invisible.

Seeking balance and organization in a chaotic world, while emphasizing the transient nature of beauty, these images test the boundaries of photography by challenging its ability to render an image of what is invisible to the eye by means of time and distortion.

—Florian Ruiz


Editors’ Note: Don’t miss the work of all the other winners and finalists from the LensCulture Earth Awards 2015. In total, you’ll find 34 unique points of view inspired by the earth, nature and our shared surroundings. Beauty, destruction, wonder and hope—these are timely, important works that shouldn’t be missed!