Gallery ‘Iolani presents ‘Ai Pōhaku, Stone Eaters, featuring intergenerational poets, painters, carvers, weavers, filmmakers, photographers, and musicians telling a story of Kanaka ʻŌiwi contemporary art that began during the archipelago-wide cultural reawakening of the 1970s and continues to unfold.
The collaborative work of Hawaiian artists, curators, and educators will be on display at Gallery ‘Iolani and concurrently at six interrelated college and university venues on Oʻahu, including Koa Gallery, Kapiʻolani Community College; The Art Gallery, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa; East-West Center Gallery; and Hōʻikeākea Gallery, Leeward Community College. Each venue shows a different portion of the exhibit.
March 31 – May 5, 2023
Friday, March 31, 4–7PM
“This exhibition affirms our long-standing acts of creative resistance and persistence…”
– Drew Kahuʻāina Broderick, Curator
Meala Bishop, Solomon Robert Nui Enos, Roen Hufford, ʻĪmaikalani, Kalāhele, Lehuauakea , Nanea Lum, Tiare Ribeaux, Maikaʻi Tubbs
Despite the abundance of our artistic expressions, it has been more than twenty years since a large-scale exhibition of Kanaka ‘Ōiwi art was presented within the University of Hawai‘i (UH) System. Aware of its context, ‘Ai Pōhaku, Stone Eaters addresses the exclusion of Kānaka worldviews from academia, specifically within the UH Mānoa Department of Art and Art History, and an overall lack of institutional support for Kānaka art across the Islands. Beyond the present educational environment, systemic racism and anti-Hawaiian stances underlie many of the inequities and associated challenges that we face daily. By advocating for Kānaka artists and culture bearers, this exhibition offers audiences an opportunity to form meaningful connections to our diverse work while ensuring that our stories of art are sustained in our ancestral homelands and abroad.