Chernobyl photographer
April 26, 2006 10:29 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for the name of a photographer who took up-close photos of the Chernobyl nuclear plant after the explosion in 1986. I believe that he is/was a Russian and probably died due to the radiation he received.

I read about him and saw the photos he took in a magazine; I think it was Time and it was probably in 1996, the ten-year anniversary of the accident. The one image that really stands out in my mind is a black-and-white photo of a cleanup crew in radiation suits working on the roof of the reactor, and the film is streaked from the bottom up due to the radiation. I've Googled and searched Time's archives but can't come up with the name of the photographer or the photograph described above. Thanks!
posted by Raven13 to Media & Arts (3 answers total)
igor kostin?
posted by misanthropicsarah at 11:31 AM on April 26, 2006

Though not a photographer, but a documentary filmmmaker, Vladimir Shevchenko and a small camera crew filmed 'Chernobyl: A Chronicle of Difficult Weeks,” (also known as “The Bell of Chernobyl”) in the beginning of May 1986. According to several brief articles that I found in the New York Times, Mr Shevchenko and his crew completed the film in August 1986, but the Soviet government suppressed it for six months.

In February 1987, the finished film premiered at the Soviet Film Festival in Tbilisi. One year after the accident, in April 1987, the Ukrainian Communist Party newspaper, Pravda Ukrainy, noted in an article about Mr Shevchenko’s recent death, that those in his team were the first filmmakers to arrive at the Chernobyl plant after the accident. Mr. Shevchenko, who was allowed to film in the immediate vicinity of Unit #4, had a high temperature while editing the film, but continued to work.

The newspaper also reported that the film was contaminated by radioactive particles, which showed up on screen as "the visible face of radiation" and shocked those who saw it. I couldn't find any followup if Mr. Shevchenko’s death was ever added to the official Soviet casualty toll from the accident, but there are several Russian-language film journals that contain articles which mention his life and work.
posted by gargoyle93 at 12:17 PM on April 26, 2006 has a link on their front page to a multimedia slideshow about "The Liquidators" (can't find a way to link to it, sorry), including photographs taken at "ground zero" by Anatoly Rasskazov
posted by anastasiav at 3:35 PM on April 26, 2006

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