By , June 19, 2010 2:56 am
Lahaina Art Gallery
Image by Omega Man via Flickr

Browse The Art Galleries In Lahaina

When the ehukai, the sea breeze, cools Lahaina at night, it’s pleasant to stroll and window shop in the historical town. It’s especially enjoyable on Friday nights because Friday night is Art Night in Lahaina. The weekly event, which is sponsored by the Lahaina Town Action Committee, is now one of Maui’s most popular things to do on Friday nights. You will find a different style of art at each gallery to make this a unique adventure and an experience to remember. Several years ago, some of the town’s gallery owners got together to create a special evening where art lovers were invited to browse through their galleries, meet some of the artists whose works were on display, and just enjoy viewing art at leisure. The galleries literally roll out red carpets, put out light refreshments, wine, and strolling musicians. The mood is very relaxed, dress up if you wish, and don’t hesitate to ask all the questions you like. It’s a great chance to meet some of the island’s foremost artists. If you’re not going to be in Lahaina on a Friday night, don’t worry about it…just pick any day or night of the week to enjoy the immense variety of artwork featured at the galleries. The Lahaina Visitor Center located in the Old Courthouse Building, ( where the Banyan Tree is) has a one page flyer which lists Lahaina’s eighteen galleries and the artists they feature. Although the flyer has a map on it, you don’t need it. From the north end of Front Street where public parking is available at the shopping center, stroll down Front Street, make side street detours on Lahainaluna Road and Dickinson Street, and end your walk at 505 Front Street. Public parking is also available across from 505 Front Street.

Take A Class From An Art Center
Maui’s natural beauty makes it a Mecca for artists and the artist-at-heart. Release your creativity at one of three excellent facilities: The Art School at Kapalua, the Lahaina Arts Society in Lahaina, and Hui No’eau Visual Arts Center in Makawao. All three have ongoing exhibits and offer art classes in different media, workshops, and a chance to reveal the artist within you. Follow the Norfolk pine tree lined road above Kapalua to Office Road. In an old building, which was originally the village blacksmith shop, The Art School at Kapalua embraces all of the arts. A typical day may include ballet, aerobics, bonsai, oil painting, and ceramic classes. While the school’s programs are geared toward its West Maui residents, visitors are welcome to attend the reasonably priced classes. For information on classes, call 665-0007. In the heart of Lahaina, the 30-year-old Lahaina Art Society is located in the Lahaina Courthouse Building. Built in the 1850′s, the coral-block building is now a gallery exhibiting the works of the society’s 300 members. Prison cells located in the building’s basement are still in use; only now, they are used to highlight special shows which change on the first Monday of each month. Outside, under the shade of the oldest Banyan tree on Maui, members also display and sell their work in a sidewalk gallery on weekends. Although one of the society’s missions is to share art with children in outreach programs, the society also offers art classes in various media by member and visiting artists. Call 661-0111 for details. It is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. except for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Located at 2841 Baldwin Avenue in Makawao is Kaluanui, a 10-acre Mediterranean-style mansion. Built in 1917, it was the home of missionary descendants Henry and Ethel Baldwin. Mrs. Baldwin enjoyed inviting friends to paint with her in its spacious grounds. The estate is now home to the Hui No’eau Visual Arts Center . Exhibits, classes in all mediums, a fabulous gift shop and member shows are just a few of the ongoing events scheduled year-round at the Hui. It is open daily from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. For more information call 572-6560.

Pay Homage To A Famous Aviator
Charles Lindbergh, the first man to cross the Atlantic in an airplane, traveled around the world and visited many beautiful places. When it was time for him to depart on his final journey, he chose to leave from Kipahulu, Maui. There’s a peacefulness surrounding the Palapala Hoomau Church and the adjacent cemetery. A Chinese Banyan spreads its branches protectively over the entrance to the church’s enclosed yard. Simple concrete stepping stones lead into the limestone coral church built in 1857. At first, the church is deceptively simple. A plain, dark brown cross seems to be the only ornament, but as you walk further into it, there is a painted glass window of Jesus Christ. The window is displayed in a niche on the side of the church. Samuel F. Pryor, who was Charles Lindbergh’s close friend and neighbor, commissioned a New Zealand artist to do the window for the church when Pryor restored it many years ago. Outside, you can see Lindbergh’s grave under the shade of a Java plum tree. Before he died, Lindbergh sketched out a simple design for his grave and coffin. He asked his Hawaiian neighbors to dig his grave and to build his coffin. The grave is 12 feet deep, approximately 10 feet wide and lined with lava rock. The coffin is a plain, eucalyptus wood box. On the morning of August 26, 1974, one of the world’s most famous aviators died. His body was clothed in his favorite working clothes, a long sleeve shirt and worn pants, and placed into his coffin. Around noontime, a pick-up truck transported it to the church without fanfare. A scant 14 people witnessed its arrival and attended the short ceremony inside the church. There were no elaborate funeral wreathes and messages of condolences from around the world. Anne Morrow Lindbergh sat alone in the first pew, her neighbors gathered behind her protectively. A lone reporter was reluctantly admitted to the gathering…a silent witness to record the occasion for the public. Freshly picked flowers, entwined into a lei, were placed on the coffin. Bouquets of yellow ginger arranged simply in tall vases decorated the pulpit. After the ceremony, the men carried his coffin to his grave and lowered it into the ground. A dump truck stood by on the side to pour its load of smooth beach pebbles over the grave. It was pau, Charles A. Lindbergh was home. The peacefulness that Lindbergh sought in his life is still felt at Kipahulu. On his grave is inscribed, “If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea…” from Psalms 139. The next line reads, “even there thou hand shall lead me.” Take that invisible hand and let it lead you through the cemetery to the Kipahulu Lighthouse. Enjoy the beautiful view, the sound of the ocean crashing on the rocks far beneath the cliffs. Listen for the rustle of the breeze in the trees. At the Pryor home that was located just a short half-mile away from the church, there was a sign posted on a pine tree, “If there is a heaven on earth, it is here, it is here, it is here.”

See An Ancient Heiau
A heiau is a Hawaiian temple or religious place. The basic structure was about the size of a basketball court and surrounded by specially built walls. All that remains today are the basic structures, made of stone. Traditional heiaus were made of wood and leaves. Some held terrible fear for the islanders as human sacrifices were regular occurrences. Others were places of refuge or sanctuaries for the disadvantaged. Two of Maui’s most interesting Hawaiian historical heiau sites are the Halekii and Pihana State Monuments. Due to a reconstruction effort in 1958, Halekii heiau better represents the original structure. The two heiaus are large, intact and, situated on the top of a sand dune. These temples were very important structures for the island’s early alii (Hawaiian chiefs).

Critique Some Art

Search out all the nooks and crannies. If you love art, Maui is a perfect place to browse through art galleries, exhibits, museums, and 101 other places to drink in the diverse mixture of artwork produced by the painters, sculptors, ceramists, woodworkers, print makers, photographers and glass blowers that call Maui home. While Lahaina is the acknowledged capital of Maui’s art world, galleries and exhibits are located all over the island.In Makawao, a cowboy town with a colorful past, visitors can watch molten globs of glass being hand blown into objects d’art and visit art galleries. At the Bailey House in Wailuku Town, a museum that was once a girl’s seminary in Central Maui, you find examples of artwork created by members of Hawaii’s first missionary families. The resort areas of both Wailea and Kaanapali, noted for their elegant hotels have art treasures from all over the world grace their public areas and gardens. Even if you’re not a registered guest at the hotel, you can still enjoy their collections…without paying a hefty tab to do so. Annual art shows and exhibits such as Art Maui, a juried art show sponsored by Hui No’eau Visual Arts Center, on Baldwin Avenue between Makawao and Paia, provide the island’s art community with a chance to display their finest work. The Maui Arts & Cultural Center in Central Maui has become the focal point for the performing and visual arts on Maui. It too sports a wonderful collection of work by internationally acclaimed artists. If you’re there for an evening performance at the Castle Theater, during intermission, stroll down the curved wall displaying the work of noted Lahaina artist George Allan. Rather than create one monstrous piece to fit the scale of the theater’s lobby, he chose to create 88 12″x 12″ portraits of island people doing the things they love best: fishing, playing music, surfing, horseback riding, motorcycling, almost every imaginable activity under the Maui sky! What’s really fun is that many of the people are recognizable…you may even be able to find the personable young lady who checked you into your hotel in one of Allan’s portraits. From old Wailuku town to Kahakuloa, art is everywhere. Even if your private art collection consists of framed reproductions of prints you can still be a patron of the arts!

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