Art in Hawaii
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Observe the work of Hawaii’s artists and you’ll see and feel the poetry of the Islands expressed in color, light, and shadow – painted, printed, sculpted, etched, photographed, and filmed. Likewise, our artisans and craftspeople, create masterpieces that are both timeless and timely – every one infused with the generous spirit of aloha that’s as much a part of our nature as the sun itself. The art experience – and the products of that experience – varies from island to island. The lush, natural landscape of Kauai inspires painting and crafts that are as sophisticated as they are direct. Painters, sculptors, and crafts-people thrive on Maui where the whaler’s art of carving on ivory is still quite popular. Oahu’s art scene is both steeped in tradition and wildly contemporary. And it shouldn't surprise you that creativity on Hawaii, the Big Island, can be fiery indeed. Best of all, no matter where you go in the islands, you’ll find that artists are just as accessible as the art they create.
Hawaii has more than its share of museums, celebrating everything from Hawaii’s history and culture to its contemporary art. The Bishop Museum on Oahu is the largest museum in Hawaii dedicated to studying and preserving the state’s history and is also considered the premier natural and cultural history institution in the Pacific. At the Lahaina Heritage Museum, visitors can literally feel the historical and cultural, vitality of Maui’s legendary whaling town. And at the Kauai Museum, it’s possible to view galleries showcasing the work of multi-cultural artists, sculptors and craftsmen as well as learn about the geological formation of the Hawaiian Islands, early Native Hawaiian life, and the Hawaiian Monarchy.
On the other side of the spectrum, the Honolulu Museum of Art overlooking Honolulu has an awesome display of cutting-edge painting and sculpture. And for those interested in seeing the future, Hilo’s Imiloa Astronomy Center features a variety of space-age, interactive exhibits as well as a theater.
The Art of Film
Year in and year out, Hawaii contributes its vast natural resources to the art of film, providing settings and backdrops that are truly beyond compare. More than 60 box office features – including "South Pacific", "King Kong", and "Jurassic Park" – have been shot on the island of Kauai alone and Oahu has been the setting for the re-born "Hawaii 5-0", "Hunger Games 2: Catching Fire" and many more. No matter where you travel in the islands, you’re likely to see film crews, actors, and actresses, and in several cases, it’s possible to take tours of famous locations.
Maui Nei connects history and Hawaiian culture in guided walking adventures and arts immersion programs. Choose from three tour offerings or customized interactive programs for your group. Journey back in time with Hawaiian storytellers to live the aloha in an authentic cultural tour experience.
Visit us in beautiful Waikiki and discover the richness of Hawaii through the eyes of a variety of artists. The artists will personally introduce you to their work in the splendor of this outdoor tropical setting.
Hawaii Pacific Parks is a non-profit cooperating association working in partnership with the National Park Service in Hawaii and in American Samoa. Proceeds from our bookstores support interpretive and educational programs, research projects, publications, and cultural activities.
A venue for the Art in Public Places Program of the Hawaii State Foundation on Culture and the Arts, the Hawaii State Art Museum (HiSAM) features works of art primarily by artists with a connection to Hawaii and exhibits on topics of interest to communities in our state. Admission is always free!
Kahilu Theatre Foundation raised its curtain in 1981 as a 490-seat Broadway Stage. Today, in addition to presenting a full season of world-class performances, we offer quality art exhibits from emerging and established visual artists and develop accessible performing arts programs for students of all ages.
This Smithsonian-affiliated Lyman Museum tells the story of Hawaii’s islands and people. Exhibits trace Hawaii’s history from its volcanic origins and the flora and fauna that arrived before humans to life in ancient Hawaii and the immigrant groups that helped shape Hawaii’s unique culture of today