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REIMAGINING WAIKIKI: BTS WITH THE ARTISTS & THE EXHIBITS

Welcome to Reimagining Waikīkī—an exhibit where meaningful messages meet spectacular experiences. Our entire #SurfjackFam, along with Puʻuhonua Society and Contact Hawaii,welcomes you to explore the interactive contemporary art project in our five penthouse suites and throughout the hotel.

Below, more about the artists and the exhibits that have transformed these spaces into immersive funhouses filled with culture and color.

A special thanks to DJ, producer, musician Carlos Niño for supplying the tunes. Download his exclusive mix tape below.

1.
The pool
North Waikiki Gyre
By Mark Cunningham

 

Made in Hawaii, born in Massachusetts, Mark Cunningham has been in love with the ocean and surf for 60 years.  Punahou released him in 1974 for good behavior…Mark received his BA from Sandy Beach Community College, his BS from Makapuu U. and his Masters at Pipeline Tech.  A retired City & County of Honolulu Lifeguard he still spends the bulk of his time on the beach and in the water. 

As much as Mark loves to ride waves he’s just as intrigued with what lie’s beneath them and what they wash ashore.

When the conditions allow, he dons mask, fins and snorkel and makes the most out of exploring and scavenging reefs and impact zones for exercise and treasure. Beachcombing between Makapuu and Kahuku on Oahu’s Windward shoreline, has provided all the plastic flotsam and jetsam that you see presented here.

To Mark, these pieces represent a life, a story and an adventure: the remains of a wipeout, a tale floated from miles away, the shiny and the new becoming corroded and encrusted, and the inevitable passage of time.

How long were these items adrift?  Which boat or country did they originate from?  How many birds or fish nibbled at these?  How do we stop Plastic Pollution from entering our Oceans?

It’s Mark’s deep lifelong love of beaches, the ocean and surfing that has inspired him to share this with you….

2.
The poolside cabanas
IN TONGUES
By Lala Openi

 

Lala Openi is a mixed-media artist & designer learning self actualization through colloquial metamorphism. 5th-generation San Francisco Bay-bred, Openi utilizes digital, tactile and auditory art forms to activate narratives of identity and engage in introspective conversation on the ever-shifting cultures of both self and space.

At a grass-roots level, Openi’s work focuses on bringing visual representation to the voices of NPO’s, fellow artists, community centers, and POCowned businesses in both the Oakland Bay Area and Hawai’i. Through event curation, installations, film screenings, think pieces and art residencies, Openi’s body of work is deeply rooted in their participation as a co-founder and member of acclaimed Bay Area- and Honolulu-based collectives Veuxdo Child Films, The House of Malico, The Contingency, and Them Hellas. Check out Openi’s work at: www.openi.in

 

IN TONGUES was conceived in collaboration with Kaleipumehana Cabral, a queer kanaka, creative, project manager, aspiring indigenous researcher & MSW based in Koʻolaupoko.

3.
Downstairs TV Installation
HI ATLAS
By Sean Connelly

Sean Connelly is a Honolulu-Based designer and creative producer. Born on O‘ahu in 1984,Sean is an active architect and artist whose work strives to promote justice-advancing futures. Through built projects, creative speculation, and spatial communication, Sean works across scales, from individuals to organizations, gathering and applying knowledge and indigenous science through a variety of media addressing the dynamics of human geography today. Exploring the intersections of form-making, networks, perception, and cartography, Sean’s focus is ecological, economic, and technologic in scope. He approaches material, information, energy, and time as planetary systems that humans design and redesign.

4.
Penthouse entrance stairwell
Views All Around: Arrangement
By Alina Kawai

 

Alina Kawai is a Honolulu-based painter. She combines experiences and moments of the past, present, and future to recreate narratives. Her painting becomes an investigation of how to represent moments that are precious, forgotten, or concealed. Kawai was born in Hyogo, Japan and now resides in Honolulu, Hawai‘i. In 2016 she graduated with her BFA from University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, with an Outstanding Undergraduate Award In Painting. 

5.
Room 1035
Plastic Free Waikīkī
By Nikole Nelson of BLKCORAL, Mark Cunningham, Reise Kochi
and Casea Collins-Wright of the Surfjack

 

Passionate for all things art and design Nikole Nelson, owner of BLKCORAL, creates unique experiences and conceptual environments to engage and insight curious exploration. In unison with her team of collaborative artists, designers, makers and craftsmen, BLKCORAL builds moments to be explored and remembered through custom art installations, interior design, events and set design. Nikole’s professional accomplishments encompass interior art and design for clients such as New Balance, Kate Spade, Tory Burch, Coach, Honolulu Coffee, Paiko, Arvo and RevoluSUN; set design for NBC, New Balance, Hilton and The Modern; and Art and Design Educator in Hawaii and Japan. Nikole graduated with a BFA in Interior Design and Architecture from Savannah College of Art and Design. She opened her interdisciplinary art and design studio in New York City in 2009.


Casea Collins-Wright is deeply passionate about creating meaningful experiences and building community. In addition to serving as the Director of Experience at the Surfjack, she is an independent creative producer and DJ. The mission of her work is to bring people together while bridging the gap between public discourse and creative expression.

 

Reise Kochi is an Oahu-based designer and stylist. In 2012, he founded his namesake brand of handmade leather goods. Beginning with a limited run of handbags and pet accessories, he later expanded to body harnesses and one of a kind wearable pieces. A graduate of HCC’s fashion technology program in 2010, he has since worked as an independent stylist for print and broadcast media, film projects, fashion shows, and as assistant designer to Ari South. A collaborator at his core, Kochi is always keen to work with other creatives on editorial projects and experimental endeavors.

 

6.
Room 1036
CONTACT ZONE RECON
By Local Boys

 

Against authorship and identity, Local Boys is an act of parody, resistance, and solidarity. 

Local Boy not even local

Fo real? Whea he from whea he went school?

No worry beef curry no matta

Not even one boy I tink

Fo real cuz?

Fo real. No be nails. No matta

K das coo

Everyting cherry

Raja

7.
Room 1037
(dis)orientation
By Roger and Leimomi Bong

 

In January 2018, Roger Bong and Leimomi Bong created Central Pacific Time, a made-up time zone and a real-life internet radio station broadcasting from the BoxJelly in Kaka‘ako.  It exists as a platform for the creative community to navigate our past, present, and future through sound so that we can better understand, define, and be empowered by our local and global identities. Roger and Leimomi also run Aloha Got Soul, a blog and record label featuring progressive, rare, and relatively unknown music of Hawai‘i. 

8.
Room 1039
Picture-Postcards
By Analog Sunshine Recorders

 

The Analog Sunshine Recorders are an ever-growing, Hawaii-based photo collective. ASR has been responsible for a number of independent exhibits in Honolulu, drawing people together to slow down and experience things in analog and celebrating the joy and magic of photography and lo-fi technology.

9.
Room 1038
Dahil Sa’yo
By Ara & AJ Feducia

 

With eighteen years of experience promoting and curating design, music, and art in Hawai‘i, Ara Feducia brings a deft style as the creative director of Nella Media Group. Between deadlines, Ara periodically serves as a design and typography lecturer at the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa and can often be found volunteering for local non-profit groups who support Hawai‘i’s arts and culture community.  

Originally from Orange County, AJ Feducia currently lives in Honolulu creating innovative perspectives in printmaking, sculpture, and photography. He received his BFA at the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa with a focus in printmaking. 

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