cover image Los Restos de la Revoluci%C3%B3n

Los Restos de la Revoluci%C3%B3n

Kevin Kunishi. Daylight Books (, $34.95 (80p) ISBN 978-0-9832316-2-2

In 2009 and 2010, American photographer Kunishi traveled through the highlands of northern Nicaragua, site of some of the fiercest fighting in the 1980%E2%80%931990 civil war between the Sandinista government and the U.S.-backed Contras. He presents a selection of color photos of the visible traces of that war. Some portray places, such as the eroded remains of a foxhole or the shattered ruins of a church. Others focus on physical objects: a tree branch that was used to suspend captives in a notorious prison; rusty pieces of land mines found by children at play; a fully operational Kalashnikov rifle unearthed from a hidden cache. The most affecting photographs reveal the faces of survivors. The captions are presented in a separate section from the photographs, encouraging the reader to initially view the images without explanatory text. In some cases this adds a grim irony, as when a lush, apparently peaceful forest clearing is revealed to be a helicopter crash site. However, some readers will see this arrangement as an inconvenience. Kunishi does not offer a narrative history of the war or a political analysis of its causes or outcomes, but his work reminds us of the human costs. Photos. (Nov.)