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Reconstructing Memories

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Zero Project Hawaii is a part of the exhibition

November 5 – December 13, 2006
University of Hawaii Art Gallery,

Hours: M – F 10:30 – 4:00
Sundays 12:00 – 4:00

approximately 25,000 photographs, paper, tape
39' x 30'

Project Update:

See video clips:

"My memory of war was making a plastic model of a Zero fighter, and playing with it. ... I am not a historian, nor am I a politician. ... I am frequently asked to clarify my status, whether I belong to the right or left. The fact is that answering these questions is not what I am asked to do as an artist. Judging right from wrong doesn't make any sense to me either. On the contrary, questioning people from a lot of different dimensions through my work, bringing those questions to light is what I am aiming at. Through the process of doing so, I sincerely believe that by looking back at the past, a spirit of forgiveness, intelligence and respect for a better future will emerge."
—Katsushige Nakahashi

Volunteers worked with Japanese contemporary artist Katsushige Nakahashi to construct a life-size WWII Japanese Phantom Zero airplane by taping together photographs.

Zero length 38'; wingspan 39'.

Contact Katsushige Nakahashi and see project images on the project blog: <>

Zero Project Hawaii

Japanese contemporary artist Katsushige Nakahashi finished building a life-size Japanese Zero airplane for the exhibition Reconstructing Memories. It was on view at the University of Hawaii Art Gallery through December 13, 2006. Volunteers taped together approximately 25,000 photos to create the replica Zero and talked about their memories of war. Work on Zero Project Hawaii ran from late October.

The focal point of Zero Project Hawaii is a Zero fighter plane used by the Japanese for the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 that subsequently crash-landed on Niihau. Katsushige Nakahashi's evocative use of this object is a starting point for discussion. At the close of the exhibition on December 13, 2006, the Zero was carried from the gallery to the site of a long-forgotten bomb shelter on the lawn of Hawaii Hall and burned to commemorate the Niihau incident of World War II. Nakahashi hopes that through the process of sharing their experiences and by the burning, people will reach a deeper understanding and spiritual renewal. Similar projects were presented in Japan, Australia, Seattle, and at Smith College in Massachusetts.

For more information contact the University of Hawaii Art Gallery at 808-956-6888 or by email at

Go to this link for more information on the exhibition and artists: