Exhibit Looks Through ‘Three Eyes’
I got to Chinatown pretty late last First Friday because I had been trying to squeeze the most out of an end-of the-week urge to study. The weather was pretty ominous at dusk, which always puts a bit of a damper on a night, since a lot of people are deciding their evening plans around that time. But I kind of get a kick out of foul weather, so I was happy to be able to wear long sleeves without sweating as I headed into town.
I usually try to get to Chinatown around 7 p.m. on First Friday so that I can do a walkabout and see what places are hosting events. There are so many shops and art galleries in Chinatown that open their doors to visitors on this night. Clothing shop Roberta Oaks, for instance, always is a place for some amazing craft cocktails and interesting conversation on First Fridays. And Madre Chocolate usually has some really interesting music of the world/ transcendental flavor. Unfortunately, I got there right at 9, which is really pushing it on the tail end of the art events.
But The ARTS at Marks Garage had some really cool new work up. Last year, Carl F.K. Pao and Charlton Kupa’a Hee had a collaborative show called Makalua or Two Eyes. This year, they added artist Cory K.H. Taum to the mix and named the show Makakolu or Three Eyes. These three artists are making work that could not come from anywhere but Hawaii. They explore their Kanaka Maoli heritage through a modern lens, creating work that looks both toward the future and the past. There are elements of traditional geometry and island inspiration, painted with a contemporary look of boldness that is simultaneously eye-catching and fun, yet cleanly executed and chic. The work will be up throughout the month, and there are also painting workshops being held throughout November for teens.
Later that night, Fresh Café hosted in4mation’s Ala Moana grand opening after-party, and I got to see a great reggae band, Lion Fiyah, live for the first time. They had slick lyrics over new-school roots beats, and the whole room was jamming. It was cool to hear music that echoed the art show’s flavor of looking back toward the roots and doing something new and fresh with it.