May Day was a crucial propaganda event of the year for The Communist Party. A day when all workers were supposed to participate in marches of labor support around the country on the 1st day of the month.
It was during one of these days in 1986 when I was only 7 years of age that I visited my grandparents in the countryside with my parents. It was a warm day despite the time of year, trees already been blossoming and the grass was green. Despite that, I could sense anxiousness in my parent’s conversations and I was told to stay indoors and play with my sister. Adults in the next room were discussing some serious matters and neighbors kept coming into the house to join in. Then, just after midday, we were driven to a small local hospital without any explanation. When we arrived hundreds of children and parents were queuing for something. I still remember that awful sour dark medicine I was forced to drink, it was meant to keep me healthy. That is all I knew back then.
The Chernobyl Nuclear Disaster in Ukraine was so far the worst nuclear accident in human kind history (along with comparable Fukushima Daiichi reactor explosion in Japan). In years following it claimed the lives of thousands of people who worked at the plant during the process of contamination. Today it affects the lives of many more who were exposed to the high levels of radiation carried in the wind and the soil. The long-term environmental effects are still being analyzed and widely discussed.
As a result of the contamination The Soviet Union established Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, which until today spreads roughly 30kms in each direction of the power plant with access controlled by the Army. The plant and the town of Pripyat are completely uninhabited with the exception of 300 people in small neighboring villages.
Yet numerous reports and studies suggest that the wildlife population has since flourished due to the significant reduction of human impact.
The Chernobyl Project portrays vision of an involuntary park where flora and fauna slowly and gradually claim back its natural habitat. Through a terrible human technological error this radioactive urban wasteland has become a safe zone for nature.