Urbanophilia/Urbanophobia|Love and Fear of the City. 2015

What do I love about the city, and what do I fear? What does the city of Honolulu mean to me? This project is an ode to my hometown.  The subject is a section of Honolulu from the ocean at Kewalo Basin to the mountains of Makiki Heights, observed in satellite photographs from the computer application “Google Earth”. I have formed and cut patterns with paper based on the shapes of buildings, trees, streets, hills and mountains recorded from a distant, aerial view.

While looking at the satellite imagery, my perspective flips to eye level in my imagination and I recognize the shapes in the urban landscape of Honolulu. I draw without measuring, and through the inaccuracy of my translation of visual information, I have personalized the aerial view that pretends technical objectivity.

The process of paper cutting and forming is labor-intensive, repetitive and a kind of mundane meditation.  The results of these processes are physical manifestations of time spent contemplating the place that I call home.  I think about Honolulu, a city that fills all the space between coastline and mountain range. It is a place that is part of my identity and it informs my subjective experience of every other place in which I have stayed.

This project represents an inquiry into the often-held idea of the city in opposition to nature, because I also want to understand the city as an extension of human creation and therefore ultimately a product of nature.