Trade Winds

Hawai‘i remained uninhabited until circa 300 AD, when Polynesians from the Marquesas Islands discovered these volcanic islands. They navigated their double- hulled canoes by the stars, tide, and the winds. They flourished there for over a millennium before the arrival of British captain James Cook.

Today, Hawai‘i Islands has become one of the most tourist destinations in U.S.
People enjoy the last paradise on earth. When I visit there and observe the coexistence of human development and everlasting nature, I start to wonder how the winds shaped the very islands and their history. I walk venture deeper and deeper into nature, looking for the original landscape of this land. Every time wind touches me, my mind drifts with it back in time. Using my large format film camera and a slow shutter speed, I seek to capture wind that changes whole history of O‘ahu.

Recently, in my darkroom in New York City, I heard the news that of a volcanic eruption in Hawai‘i, causing people to evacuate. As I watched a slow lava flow swallow up houses, I uttered to myself “History repeats itself”. Humankind and our existence account for so short a moment in natural history. It was here long before us, and it will be here long after us. And then I came to wonder: these photographs that I’m looking at right now, are they of the past, present, or future.