A nationally-known artist from North Carolina, will be holding a book signing of her new book, “Painter by Providence” at Kalele Bookstore and Divine Expressions on March 4. Dee Beard Dean will be attending the Maui Plein Air invitational Paintout before coming to Molokai.
“Painter by Providence” is a richly illustrated art book, showcasing dozens of recent oil paintings from Dean’s studio, en plein air (out-of-doors) painting and workshop excursions around the world. The book was written by Michelle Morton, an arts writer and book designer for nationally and internationally known artists.
Many of the images in the book were painted en plein air at her easel around Taos, the coastal Southeast, Mexico and Ecuador. In the first several chapters, Dean shares with readers intriguing anecdotes about her life growing up in rural Indiana, raising her children in a “Robinson Cruso-esque” atmosphere in Key Largo, Florida, and her fascinating career as a high fashion designer with her own national designer label. Later chapters are devoted to her full-time career as a renowned painter of breathtaking and color-laden landscapes, figures and portraits.
When painting outdoor scenery, Dean observes, “In plein air (out-of-doors) painting, the brushwork is truly the poetry of the painting. Rich in texture, color, meaning, and layers of emotions such as joy and confidence, brushstrokes reveal the artist’s innermost feelings at the moment the pigment was applied to the canvas.”
Dean will be at Kalele Bookstore from 12 noon – 2 p.m. on March 4. For more information, her website is DeeBeardDean.com
molokaiARTgallery.com News Release
Navigating all that Molokai has to offer has just become more convenient, and more accessible. Local artist and business owner, Linda Johnston has created www.molokaiARTgallery.com. The site is “the go-to website for Molokai” a community-based forum offering a platform for local artists and entrepreneurs to easily share their work and services with the public. It is also an online resource that serves as a guide to island life, offering touring, entertainment and lodging options for residents and tourists. Visitors appreciate reliable information from a long-time resident.
Art shows are a popular way to gather together a community, especially when it’s a family affair. Prisca Bicoy Medeiros set up an art show last Saturday at Home Pumehana with the help of her talented ohana, as a fundraiser for their church.
A four-man string band, tables of fine craftsmanship and a crowd of art lovers breathed life into Molokai Arts Center last week in a show of appreciation and support for the new organization.
In an effort to bring Molokai its first collective space for creativity, the Molokai Arts Center hosted a fundraiser to help them reach their $30,000 goal for building renovation and upgrades.
“I have always wanted to retire into the arts, but there is center for support to do so!” said Gladys Stenen, a Molokai resident and business teacher. “I am here to support the artists and their goal to enrich the community of Molokai.”
An estimated 400 Molokai residents and visitors placed donations at the silent auction and enjoyed refreshing folk music from Brown Chicken Brown Cow band of Maui.
“Today we are seeing a lot of generosity. I’m really happy people are opening their hearts and wallets to make it possible to bring an art center to Molokai,” said Treasurer Kim Markum. “We are just hoping for success.”
And a success it was. The Molokai Arts Center raised nearly $4,000 and was recently awarded a $10,000 grant from the Atherton Family Foundation.
“We have about half of the necessary funds for the project,” said Molokai Arts Center President Emilia Noordhoek. “I know it sounds crazy but we are still pushing to reach our goal of finishing the building upgrade by April or May to open a summer program for the kids.”
The arts center bought a building behind Coffees of Hawaii, and money raised will go toward structural improvements.
For more information about the arts center, or to make a donation, visit www.molokaiarts.yolasite.com or contact Emilia Noordhoek at 808-216-3663.
Maui Arts & Cultural Center News Release
This ancient saga begins with Pele’s migration to Kïlauea. Her spirit is lured by hula drums to faraway Kauai, where she finds a lover. The story details the quest of Pele’s younger sister, Hi`iakaikapoliopele, to retrieve her sibling’s man, Lohi`auipo, the chief of all Kauai. After many adventures and trials on her way, Hi`iaka finds that the chief has been killed by the devious mo`o of that island. She must reunite his body and spirit, restore him to life through the rituals of healing and bring him safely back to their crater home. It’s a very human account of love and lust, jealousy and justice and peopled with deities, demons, chiefs and commoners.
The mystery and thought-provoking enchantment for Hi`iakaikapoliopele and her story was a visual feast of cultural emotion mixed with contemporary Hawaiian thinking. Abigail Kahilikia Jokiel, Pualani Lincoln, Keali`i Maielua and Matthew Kawika Ortiz will discuss their artwork ‘Hi`iakaikapoliopele: Visual Stories by Contemporary Native Hawaiian Artists’ on Dec. 14 from 6-7 p.m. at Kulana `Oiwi.
The artwork and discussion is presented by the Maui Arts & Cultural Center in collaboration with `O Hina i ka Malama Hawaiian Language Immersion Program and Kalele Bookstore.
Did you know that Molokai is the only Hawaiian island without a public arts center? Even the small island of Lanai has a multipurpose community art center providing classes, workshops and studio access.
A group of artists believe there is a need for an arts center here on Molokai. Their vision is to build a place where they can gather to share equipment, skills and knowledge; to create beautiful and useful art; to laugh and play and enjoy friendships based on mutual interests.
November is known by many names: Native American Heritage Month, Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month, and Movember (awarness for men’s health. For literary lovers, it’s a 30-day period of character naming, plot developing and constant prose in celebration of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo).
With over 3.1 million words and 900 members strong, Hawaii is writing away. You too can tap into your inner Shakespeare or Grisham by attending weekly “write-ins” held in Kaunakakai.
Alestra Menendez, a Kualapu`u School teacher, is hosting local writing workshops for NaNoWriMo participants to discuss their work, offer advice and keep each other on track with their goals.
Six years ago, Randall was just another homeless cat. Today, he is the unofficial mascot of Aka`ula School and the star of a children’s book, Randall Returns.
Aka`ula parent Andrea Benes wrote and illustrated the book, inspired by a student’s article about Randall in the school newsletter.
“As I was reading through the article, I thought, ‘This is a children’s book!’” said Benes, who is the librarian at Aka`ula and Kilohana Elementary School. “And I know children’s books.”
Aka`ula students first befriended – and named – Randall on the old school grounds in Kaunakakai. When the school moved to its current site in Kualapu`u, Principal Dara Lukonen took Randall to her house down the road in Kualapu`u, but he soon ran away and followed the kids.
“He didn’t have to cross the highway. He had a real home, he just liked the kids,” Benes said.
She started the book with a fellow Aka`ula parent, Alestra Menendez. Benes finished it over the summer and plans to self-publish and sell it as a fundraiser for the school.
Beginning with a fake, plaster skull and a hunk of clay, several Molokai-based artists manipulated the clay with their fingers to get the basic shape. They then moved on to a human face, using small tools to shape a nose and eyes, shaving clay away to create a cheek.
This may sound familiar – earlier this year, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Rural Development hosted a sculpture workshop in an innovative way to stimulate Molokai’s economy. By tapping Molokai’s abundant creative talent, and with the support of a local casting shop, Molokai Heritage Company, the workshop helped to expand Molokai-made products.
Last April, the subject was bas relief – low-profile sculptures on a flat surface. Last week, the sculpture students expanded their skills to full round portraits.
“The purpose [of the workshop] is to give skills to create a product,” said instructor Jim Franklin – while learning new skills, the students are also able to use the casting shop to complete their 3-D art and market their talents on and off-island.
“There’s so much potential here on Molokai, we could outshine Maui,” as an artist community, Geng added.
Joao, who cast a koi fish from the last workshop, said he wants to create several more pieces before approaching local vendors and shops to sell his pieces. He described the workshops as a “grassroots” effort – “to nurture, expand, the talent already here.”
Known for its close community of musicians and artists, Molokai inspires with its rich culture, history, and natural beauty. Recently a group of artists, including Molokai keiki, had a chance to share their own inspiration translated into art.
The piece is comprised of several art mediums hewn together. Several kapa-patterned batik screens as wide as 12 feet hang from overhead. Below, on the floor, copper kalo leaves stretch skyward from their metal stalks. Bamboo, rock, and other natural materials compliment the organic vibe of the piece.
Over a year ago, the Hawaii Primary Care Association (HPCA) decided to give the state’s 13 community health centers the opportunity to heal their patrons with more than medicine. They sent out applications for grant money to create wellness art projects, and the MCHC hopped on board.
“We liked the idea of trying to use indigenous art in a healing or therapeutic kind of way,” said Cyrus Siu, MCHC’s chief financial officer. Molokai received $19,000 for supplies, shipping, and artist stipends – money secured by Sen. Dan Inouye.
While the art piece made its debut at the MCHC groundbreaking, it later displayed at the Hawaii Convention Center in Honolulu. Molokai and two other community health center’s projects were featured in an exhibition called “Maoli Arts in Real Time.”
Siu added that once the health center completes its renovations of the old Pau Hana Inn, a permanent exhibit space will be planned for the Healing Project and other community art.
“The more people, the more ideas, the more mana`o you get, the more people it’s going to touch,” Tangonan said.