Redacting the Skyline

Sponsored by The Seattle Office of Arts and Culture.

Seattle’s rapid growth and the impact of the construction of buildings are common conversation topics amongst local residents, so I felt it was important to create an artwork that connects with this discussion. There will always be changes as cities grow, but at the same time, I feel there should be a consideration to balance consciousness with profit so the end result cultivates and fulfills the needs of the community.


The installation is located at the Next 50 Pavilion building at the Seattle Center. The Seattle Center is the soul of the city; it has a famous history; it is a gathering place; a center for events, arts and culture; and more importantly, it is an oasis in the middle of the Seattle—a green space that is a key educational and recreational fabric of Seattle that is shared by all members of the community and visitors from all over the world. To that end, I wanted to create a transformative piece from the perspective of the Center looking out at the city.


I chose the method of “redaction” to create my installation, which is a technique commonly used in editing texts. My “canvas” is the window façade of the building and the process of “redaction” is achieved by applying white electrical tape to create images.

For the purpose of practicality and durability, white electrical tape is the perfect material for the redaction sketch to be applied on the window. The tape not only acts as a “wite-out” tape, but it is easy to attach on and remove off the window and most importantly, it is also water proof.

As images of construction sites and buildings emerge in my piece, the window reflections are covered with each application of tape. The reflections of the green space and skyline of Seattle Center are reshaped with each new building introduced in the sketch; hence, the “redacting of the skyline.”


The installation is broken into three stages, as it is a progressive installation, so the sketch changes and transforms with each stage.

Stage 1 – August 22nd – 23rd

Life-size drawings on paper to fit the windows were completed and used as blueprints for phase 1 of the installation. This installation phase, as with all construction sites, introduces images of the infrastructure such as tower cranes of several construction sites and includes a pedestrian safety fence that runs across the front of the entire piece.

Stage 2 – September 17th – 18th

The redaction continues with more infrastructure images added to the piece. The building construction sites are progressively dominating the urban-scape, as the construction of each skyscraper develops.

Stage 3 – October 5th – 7th

The buildings are completed and all but one construction tower crane and a portion of the pedestrian safety fence are removed. The redaction is complete. The completion of the buildings in the installation sketch has reduced most of the window’s reflection of Seattle Center’s greenery and skyline.

The installation, “Redacting the Skyline,” will be on display at Seattle Center until January 2, 2017.

Placing the delicately slices strips of tape to form a crane.
Phase 1 complete

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