The "art world" in Hawaii is pre-occupied
with "Postcard art"... art that addresses current times and I was Here! Holiday
or post card art. I would like to think of my work as art of the "eternal now",
a state where one becomes one with the experience of the moment.
My abstract art Attempts to draw on an
inner world and produce the most absorbing paintings that bring across the
feeling of a highly beautiful transcendental universe. Are my works
masterpieces? Well, maybe some of them - indeed respected artists have told me
when visiting my studio - "This work is a masterpiece - do not sell it, at least
not for a low sum." It is hard to say what is a masterpiece - especially in
this day and age when the focus on the quality of workmanship and craftsmanship
in art has changed. Are there masterpieces being produced today? Have I painted
a masterpiece? This is not for me to say, and only for history to judge,
which I hope will be kind to me.
Trees: Banyan Trees, Palm Trees, Koa
Trees, Mankind has a connection with trees since the earliest time... this is
born out in Bible with the references to the different trees in the Garden of
Eden.The tree paintings are an allusion to the human condition... roots anchored
in the ground, head in the heavens... arms (branches) reaching to the sky. The
paintings of trees are an exploration... the search continues.... painting trees
goes on and is not related to the ethnic group from which the artist comes.
Is this "Hawaiian Art?" Definitely, as the term "Hawaiian Art" and "Hawaiian
Painting" defines the geographical location from where the art comes, and since
the work is of the Hawaiian landscape, this also relates to the content of the
Plein air: Working directly from nature,
from direct observation is the essence of plein air painting. Nature is the
teacher, provides the answers, lighting, color, lightness and darkness and
values. No need to invent - rather, in plein air, not to impose the artist's ego
on nature, yet to be receptive, observant. In plein air, through developing the
powers of observation, a greater sensitivity to visual nuances emerges.
Portraits: I paint faces but not
portraits. The human face is possibly of the most fascinating landscape, each
line, shape and angle revealing a lifetime of experience, thought and emotion.
It is all there - we just have to look and put it down on the canvas, Normally,
we may not gaze at a person's face, as it is impolite, disrespectful and elicits
difficult responses. Yet, the portrait painter receives a license to do this,
and in painting the paintings are the record, the universal spirit recognized in
all beings and creation. From this level of awareness, phenomenal manifestation
of the play of the forces existent in creation. Beyond.
Expressionist: One sees these as but mere
labels, tags, attached names, which people fight over and in a more fundamental
level of reality have no real existence, but are mere appended labels. Is there
really a "Hawaiian art" or is their just "art" per se with no labeling? Is there
a "Hawaiian artist" or is there just an artist? When you contemplate an artist
or any human being, he/she is only a human... there is nothing "more Discerned
in his/her biology. So one producing "Hawaiian art" or "Any art" is producing
art whose content transcends the labels of "Hawaiian art" or "any other art".
Universal art is the basis. Critics and political beings may attach the labels.
Shouldn’t we strive for that which is pure?
Painting is not dead, nor should working
with paint on canvas be considered anachronistic. The tradition of painting is a
continuing and developing one. Progress is yet to be made, building on the work
of the great painters of the not-too-distant past.
It would seem that the advent of the
"ready-made" earlier in the last century, has usurped the value of craftsmanship
in art. I believe that this is a detour from the path. It is only a matter of
time in which innovation for the sake of innovation alone will fall by the
wayside. The true values of art will survive, as art strives for eternity.
My landscapes are both painted in the
open air and my studio. The work progresses through the direct process of
observing nature. Opening the eyes so greater depths of color and spatial
relationship appear. While in the field, what takes place on the canvas seems as
a reduced reflection of all that is experienced. Yet when viewed back in the
confines of the studio, it is clear that the canvas has brought back the
vitality of the greater experience.
Sometimes I feel that it is the
landscape, which has painted itself, not the by me. I have been but a medium
through which the landscape has been painted as a record recorded of its
One of the joys of painting is the
endless combination that the paint, color and texture manifest on the canvas.
When successfully different colors go into vibration or oscillation with each
other. Layers of paint are built up with various degrees of transparency
creating unpredictable new effects. I like a good, textured, painting which
gives you the sense that there is something more than the image itself. Monet is
said to have put each canvas aside, and pulled it out when the particular
atmospheric/lighting effect appeared. A particular canvas was earmarked for only
a certain atmospheric effect, and thus he would not work on it under a set of
conditions different than those he had decided to be suitable for that piece.
This is wild, but I haven't completely figured it out as yet.
I have continued with the same canvas
under varied conditions, all of these conditions adding up in terms of layers of
paint, one over the other, contributing to an unforeseen final mood which is
born from all the different painting sessions coming into harmony not without
conflict having taken place between these same layers/sessions, and their traces
evident along with their resolution. I have held back some canvases for over
fifteen years waiting for the right moment to finish it Hawaiian Reef #42
Humuhumu-nukunuku-a-pua'a is one of them .
Time seems to be an indispensable element
of the work. Time has no meaning. The span of time from the beginning of the
canvas until the realization of its completion has no predetermined time line.
Time is necessary to see all the subtleties in the work and develop the feeling
for what alterations or modifications are to be made for all the parts of the
painting to live together in harmony.
This time is also necessary for
separating the painter's labor of the painting from the intensity of feelings
that accompanied the earlier act of bringing the raw unfinished painting to be
on the canvas. At that earlier stage is identified with the stimuli outside of
the canvas, and during that period, when viewing the painting, I will see more
the external stimuli, than the work itself on the canvas. This could be for
better or for worse... Yet, the same canvas may communicate absolutely nothing
to another viewer. Thus, only once I have put the work out of his sight and over
the course of time allowed that memory of the experience to fade, and then I
would be able to once again look at the work and see it on its own merits and
make decisions on how to proceed.
It would seem that this passage of time
is in effect another layer of paint - in this case invisible, but not entirely
intangible - which goes on to the canvas and becomes part of the totality of
Most of the paintings are for sale. An
artist must survive, and as such he must sell works to buy time to create new
paintings. So, please be encouraged to buy my works and become a part of this
Paintings that are no longer available
are indicated in the caption below the image as being sold, however, if prints
are available it will be indicated.
About lighting: Light is the key -
lighting varies with time of day and accents different shapes and features.
Light through clouds like a spot light on one area of the landscape highlighting
it in contrast to the surroundings. Lighting of the paintings is of utmost
importance - good lighting will make the painting work, poor lighting will hide
what is there. Atmospheric factors change the light and the softness or hardness
Monet and the Impressionists including
greats like Pissaro, Sisley, Morrisot showed us to connect with nature in a
fresh way. Kandinsky showed us the Spiritual in Art to be true to our inner
Modern Impressionist painting and
impressionism in landscape painting and landscape paintings also has elements of
expressionism and/or expressionist tendencies contemporary art. Figurative art
and figurative painting is a non-abstract where the paintings are a window to
the world. Representational art and representational paintings more