Vol. 27: Exciting Signs on an Exciting Island

Leaving behind the cold winter winds of Tokyo, we arrived in Hawaii, land of perpetual summer. A land of brilliant sunlight, vegetation providing an affirmation of life, a chaotic profusion of natural colors. But, at the same time, the wind wafting in the shade of the trees is cool and refreshing. The attraction of these islands which act like a magnet for Japanese people is something hard to appreciate unless one actually visits them. The bright side of Hawaii is indeed wonderful, but the less popular, subdued side of the islands also has its own distinctive side. The chirping of birds amidst the sound of the billowing waves conveys the impression of nature in its pristine state.

Walking through the back streets of Lahaina, I came across a strange object. Writing could be seen on a simple suspended structure consisting simply of three lengths of wood. Considering its height in line with onefs angle of vision, it was clearly a sign. There was a floral design attached to both ends of the name of a shop. Paired with a pinwheel at the center of a bar was a suspended flowerpot. Within the ineffable simplicity and naturalness, one sensed a strong notion of playfulness and a desire to please the passerby. The sense of taking life as it comes gives rise to exciting new visual forms.

1998 Copyright (c) All Japan Neon-Sign Association