Purple The Island Issue #35

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The word Island has always held deep emotional resonance for me. I-land. Is-land. A word that conjures summer family vacations in the ’70s, romantic escapes in the ’80s, and the fantasy to disappear and start over somewhere, far away. Always looking for the Island that could change my life.

In this issue, it was important to explore all kinds of new possibilities: from transfeminism to sustainable housing, from wild swimming to archipelagic thought, from utopian topics to architecture, and from audacious fashion to the power of painting — with four fearless women artists (Amanda Wall, Elizabeth Glaessner, Miriam Cahn, and Lisa Yuskavage) whose works transport us.

It was also necessary to travel to real Islands, to shoot there, to meet people, and to capture something from this non-continental perspective: from Hong Kong and its nearby Lamma Island to New Zealand, Ibiza, a Swedish Island, and the Island of Naoshima in Japan. Each one is a powerful microcosm, a miniature world reflecting the planet and the human condition.

As many small Islands are threatened by global warming and rising water levels, it is urgent to protect them in order to save ourselves. And in the face of this changing world, what if we were to imagine the world as a vast, diverse archipelago, and to see what the Island can teach us?