A photograph of a pink flower. The frame is narrow and the background is generic : Blue sky, a few clouds – we are not familiar with the place. This could be anywhere. Anytime.


In the final days of May 2011, the Iceland-Japan Society gifted the city of Reykjavík fifty cherry blossom trees that were planted in Hljómskálagarður Park.

The gift represented an everlasting friendship and peace between Japan and Iceland.

Gifting a cherry blossom tree as a token of peace is a longstanding tradition in Japan, often often planted where war has raged, where men had lost their lives. The trees represent both birth and death, beauty and violence. In Japan, they also serve as an emblem for the short, yet colorful life of a Samurai warrior. Furthermore, the pink flowers adorned kamikaze airplanes in the Second World War.

But what about the cherry blossom trees at Hljómskálagarður Park? Must battles be raised to plant peace?


The photograph captures a moment in time that will not be

repeated. The moment becomes eternal yet elusive, at the

same time. The memory centers itself around this particular 

angle and has the possibility of transformation.


Cherry blossom trees bloom annually, for a very short period

each time. They bloom in spring, usually for a week or two.

Should you miss a cherry blossom in bloom you’ll then have to

wait through fifty bloom-less consecutive weeks to see these

fragile pink flowers appear again.


For a moment, these trees alter themselves from being

”very ordinary trees” into otherworldly and dreamy

vegetation, most reminiscent of candyfloss or a snow-covered summer. Passers-by look up and linger for a moment. We are

reminded of impermanence.

Life is short, colorful, and precious. Life is unexpected and  


is a result 

of other people’s decisions. 



What is taken out of context looks for a new context. Similar to an atom that is released from a molecule and searches for new connections. Like people search for connection. We yearn for context, we desire to belong.

Plants attach their roots to a particular place. We also tend to use the same word for ourselves – where our roots are – often referring to a particular place. It’s quite clear that plants can be uprooted and moved to the other side of the globe – but can people be uprooted and moved?

Out of place : Not in the proper situation, not belonging; inappropriate for the circumstances or location.

Where are you born? (In Ísafjörður or Kyoto?)

To be born and move

To grow up and stay

To fit in

Every year, pink flowers wake up in a public park in Reykjavík, far from their native place.

Bananas grow in a greenhouse in Hveragerði.



The frame is tight, and the plants seem gigantic, almost terrifying. A sharp eye detects tiny bananas in between enormous leaves.

The color of an object, the way we perceive it, is really the only color that the object does not absorb, but instead, reflects. If you stare at an object for long enough, then look at a white wall and blink a few times, you’ll see the image inversed. Dark becomes light, light becomes dark, green turns to purple, yellow to blue, and so forth. How we look at the world can reveal who we are, often in a more truthful way than how we present ourselves out in the world.

How does it affect the landscape when plants are moved from one corner of the world to another? How about the plants themselves? To grow bananas, certain circumstances need to be created. The ideal habitat for bananas is far away, in Africa, Asia, and South America. Icelandic bananas do not see the sun until after harvest.