MINNY LEE - MILLION YEARS / MAUNA
Million Years is a limited edition artist’s book that combines photographs, poetry, geological drawings, and scientific text. The photographs are a documentation of the changing landscape from the West Coast to the East Coast of the United States, shot during a single airplane ride from San Francisco to Newark. While the images travel through space and time, the poems contemplate the Earth’s history and formation. The photographs are altered and unaltered digital images, reflecting on nature and the effects of human inhabitance on the Earth and the planet within the universe’s grand scope.
Mauna is a book documenting the quintessential twenty-first century challenge faced by the Hawaiian people and their culture: the mountains and land that comprise Mauna Kea are without question the most sacred in all of Hawaii.
In 2009, the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) Board of Directors selected Mauna Kea’s summit as the site for a new state-of-the-art 18-story telescope. Stopping the construction of the TMT has been a decade-long effort, and it is still an ongoing struggle. This clash between corporate development and indigenous people’s rights to their native lands and the preservation of their cultural values has created tense standoffs. The Mauna Kea Protectors’ efforts have been effective so far; the construction of the TMT has been at least temporarily thwarted. The future of Mauna Kea remains tenuous — this book is call to awareness and solidarity.
Minny Lee was born and raised in South Korea, where she spent her childhood surrounded by nature. Contemplating concepts around time and space and the coexistence of duality, Lee started to make artist’s books in 2008, an ideal medium for her goals to interweave text and images. She has been photographing trees and nature for more than ten years. Recently, her interest has shifted to environmental concerns and human modification of the Earth. Lee moved to Honolulu, Hawaii in 2016 after spending more than twenty years in the East Coast of the United States. She is inspired by Hawaiian culture and nature.