THE ISLAND OF THE COLORBLIND

THE ISLAND OF THE COLORBLIND

6. On the way back from a picknick to one of the uninhabited small islands around Pingelap with the colorblind Pingelapese and all the children of the one school of the island. The bay is now protected, islanders are no longer allowed to fish for turtles. Because of the infrared colors the scene looks very romantic, at the same time there’s the visual connotation of the boats full of refugees setting off for a better future.

The Island of the Colorblind.In the late eighteenth century a catastrophic typhoon swept over Pingelap, a tiny atoll in the Pacific Ocean. One of the survivors, the king, carried the rare achromatopsia-gen that causes complete colorblindness. The king went on to have many children and as time passed by, the hereditary condition affected the isolated community and most islanders started seeing the world in black and white.Achromatopsia is characterized by extreme light sensitivity, poor vision, and complete inability to distinguish colors. Portraying the islanders that by their fellow Micronesians are described as ‘blind’ resulted in a conceptual selection of images that mask their eyes, their face, or their ‘vision’ and at the same time invite the viewer to enter a dreamful world of colorful possibilities.