Acrylic on canvas 24″ x 24″
by Mary Lou Dauray  

This picture, “Nine Million Bags and Counting #2,” is my second in a series about nuclear energy.  I am deeply concerned about the dangers posed by past, current and future nuclear power development and the dilemma posed by nuclear waste disposal.   This is a critical and ominous issue that can threaten a healthy existence of all life on this planet.  Admittedly, before I decided to tackle this topic of nuclear energy as my current artwork direction, I realized early on that I was not a scientist—just an artist trying to use my voice about climate destruction.  As a result, I plunged into the world of online information about the topic nuclear. When I came upon the incredible photos of nine million plastic bags of stored waste from the Fukushima Daiichi meltdown in Japan, I realized I had my subject.  These bags, with a lifespan of three years,  are neatly piled above ground or even in some backyards.  Alarmingly, after a serious flooding from an intense rainstorm in the Fukushima area last September, 2015, I found out that scores of these 264-gallon plastic bags just floated away and some even broke open.  I even saw a photo of a person scooping up the radioactive debris with bare hands!  Keep in mind that the Olympics are scheduled to occur in Japan in 2020…an issue that the government is keenly aware of.

My second artwork, as you can see, is definitely going in the more abstract direction than my first effort.