A Warmer Welcome


Buchanan did her best to represent Molokai well in the murals. To find out which images she would put on her artistic creation, Buchanan said she asked the locals what they thought Molokai meant to them.

But what does Molokai represent to Buchanan? “Molokai means healing to me,” Buchanan said. The artist said she traveled to over 50 islands in the Pacific region. Before coming to Molokai, she was living in American Samoa. Sadly, she decided to leave the island after falling victim to domestic violence. That’s when Molokai entered Buchanan’s life.

But it was not an easy transition to Buchanan. “I lost everything I had,” she said. After selling all her possessions, she lost all her money. When she arrived on the Friendly Isle, she had to rely on friends for a little while, so she could restart her life.

The people and the island helped Buchanan heal from the emotional and physical wounds of domestic abuse.

Unfortunately, due to financial reasons, Buchanan is relocating to California, where she will resume her artistic career, and hope to return to Molokai one day.

This is not the first time the artist paints a large scale mura. Among several of her works, standouts include a mural for the National Park Visitor's Center in Pago Pago, American Samoa, and another one at the San Francisco International Airport, in the United Airlines terminal.

Mahalo to the folks at MVA and Buchanan for helping Molokai become an even friendlier place.


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