This site features selected works by Jen Goya / Jennifer Goya-Smith.

Waikiki Sign

Jennifer Goya
Waikiki Sign, 2011
Single-Channel High-Definition Video­­­
4 minutes

Waikiki Sign, is a pre-visualization of a future art installation as seen in a single-channel video installation.  The proposed art structure will be composed of seven white letters, 40 feet tall and 40 feet wide that spell out “Waikiki” and would be constructed on the makai side of Diamond Head Crater.  The sign gathers it’s meaning from the iconic sign it imitates, a sign to be seen and desired from afar, placating the hungry tourist eye. The sign is seen from far away as a fantasy out-of-reach and out-of-touch—themes people visiting or living in Hawaii are conflicted with every day. 

The “Waikiki Sign” gathers it’s meaning from the iconic sign it imitates in Hollywood, California.  People project their desires onto the famous Hollywood Sign and for many grand dreams of success become out-of-reach.  To see the sign you must see it from far away, a symbolic act that mirrors the struggle to achieve something that many don’t experience. 

Waikiki Sign embodies the human desire to seek an untouched paradise. When visitors arrive in Hawaii, they are met with a chaotic mix of real and fantasy images of an idyllic place.  This film foreshadows a near future where this sign exists, masking the real state of Hawaii with a version of paradise only to be seen and desired from afar, much like the sign itself.


Misbits Gallery
Oxford, Mississippi