Duty Free Paradise
Duty-Free Paradise (2020-2022) is a multimedia exhibition and live performance series that plays on the tensions of lived and imagined island life focusing on Hawai’i. Through the lens of ecotourism, around which the islands’ economy heavily revolves, this work explores the contradictions between perceptions and realities of island life as a constructed paradise. Asunción looks at these tensions through American pop culture, down to the flora and fauna, underwritten by militarism and biopolitics paralleled with Asunción’s lived and family generational experience. Read more about the work in the exhibition essay published in the online Special Issue of Art and Environment in Oceania, Pacific Arts, Volume 20, Issue 1 published by Pacific Arts Association, UC Santa Cruz, CA, 2020.
The gallery’s painted floor is a reference to a hand-drawn floor plan Asunción’s father drafted from memory of his childhood home in the 1930s, located at the historic sugar plantation housing in Kahuku, HI. Viewers can access this floor plan via a QR code to view it through augmented reality within the installation. Asunción will perform in and throughout this work on Saturday, August 06, 2022, 7-8 pm, followed by a panel discussion 8-9 pm with Billie Lee and Joe Bun Keo.