Nov. 9, 2017

Media contacts:

Lesa Griffith

Tel: 808-532-8712

Adele Balderston
Tel: 808-532-8727


HONOLULU, HAWAI‘I—While the big exhibition Abstract Expressionism: Looking East from the Far West continues to draw viewers, the museum presents a series of smaller, diverse exhibitions and programs to keep the winter warm with inspiration. From new work by contemporary Hawai‘i printmaker Charles Cohan to a workshop on making cordials using herbs from the Spalding House grounds (yes, that’s right, cordials!), the museum can keep everyone as busy as Santaʻs elves this season.

Catharine E.B. Cox Award Exhibition
Ground: New Work by Charles Cohan

Nov. 30, 2017–March 25, 2018

Ground features new work by Hawai‘i artist Charles Cohan, who is a professor at the University of Hawai‘i Department of Art and Art History. The exhibition includes large-scale prints and print blocks from his Samish series, the horizontal-line images from his Ground series, as well as a collaborative installation with fellow printmaker Abigail Romanchak. 

Through the exhibition, Cohan contemplates nature’s evolutionary process, and the way memory can sometimes fix that which is in flux. He concentrates on two experiences: the eruption of Mount St. Helens and the removal of trees that, until 2015, grew on his family’s land in Washington State. 

In Converge II, the collaboration with Romanchak, Cohan brings focus to the interpretative process of “sensing” seismological phenomena—a practice that connects the geological histories of Samish Island, Washington, where Cohan is from, and Hawaiʻi, where Romanchak is from.

Catharine E.B. Cox helped museum founder Anna Rice Cooke catalog the works that would form the nucleus of the museum’s collection, and she went on to become the museum’s second director. The Catharine E.B. Cox Award for Excellence in Visual Arts was established in 1985 by the grandsons of Catherine Cox—Charles, Doak and Richard—and is given every two years to a former or current Hawai’i resident. It grants the recipient a one-person exhibition at the museum. 

Disasters of Peace: Social Discontent in the Manga of Tsuge Tadao and Katsumata Susumu
Nov. 30, 2017–April 15, 2018

See the full press release.

Honolulu Museum of Art at First Hawaiian Center
November 16, 2017–February 9, 2018

The museum presents four new exhibitions at its galleries at First Hawaiian Center in downtown Honolulu.

Between Ocean and Sky: Hana Yoshihata 
Hawai‘i Island–based artist Hana Yoshihata is inspired by her experiences on traditional voyaging canoes such as Hōkūle‘a. She applies seawater and freshwater, ink and paint to sheets of paper placed flat. She often combines this technique with detailed brushwork of linear patterns and forms, resulting in sensual, layered surfaces that evoke coastal and submerged topography, or the vastness of the night sky.

The Feeling of Movement: Sculptural Woodwork of Derek Bencomo
Maui-based wood artist Derek Bencomo uses wood’s natural shape and grain lines to create fluid pieces that curve and stretch out in three dimensions. His works appear to be crawling or dancing on spider-or-anemone-like legs or call to mind natural shapes such as shells, leaves or flower buds.

Petrichor Fall: Dana Brewer
Dana Brewer draws inspiration from the natural world and from the power of heat and gravity used in the creation of her glass forms. Her site-specific installation features multiple blown glass leaves and provides a meditative respite within the buildingʻs mezzanine gallery space.

In the Woods: Hiroko Sakurai
Artist and paper conservator Hiroko Sakurai creates still, tranquil images of trees on multi-panel screens, scrolls, and wood. Her meticulous handwork is often borrowed from traditional art and craft techniques, which she practices repeatedly and patiently, as though the process were a kind of meditation.

Trade Cloth from the Coromandel Coast
Now through April 8, 2018

The earliest archeological fragments of cotton textiles in India date to 3200BC. By the 1700s, Indian cotton was a global commodity. On view in this exhibition are sembagi, a Malay term for refined painted, printed cloths made on Indiaʻs Coromandel Coast for the Indonesian market, where they were status symbols.

Landscape Prints by Keisai Eisen
December 21, 2017–February 25, 2018

The museum changes the works on view in the Robert F. Lange Gallery for Japanese woodblock prints every two months. While primarily remembered for his portraits of women, particularly the sumptuously dressed courtesans of the Yoshiwara brothel district, the prolific woodblock print designer Keisai Eisen (1790–1848) also produced numerous landscapes throughout his career. A clear influence upon the artist was Utagawa Hiroshige (1797–1858), so much so that Eisen’s vistas are often mistaken for those of his contemporary. Nevertheless, his profound skill at depicting figures in action and creating dramatic mood through the use of lighting is entirely unique. The works displayed in this show testify that, alongside both Hiroshige and Katsushika Hokusai (1760–1849), Eisen was one of the most formidable Japanese landscape artists of the 19th century.


PechaKucha Night: #32 Abstract

December 1 • 7–9pm • Art School • Free

The quarterly speed presentation session by creatives takes on the theme of abstract. Part of programming for the exhibition Abstract Expressionism: Looking East from the Far West, on view through Jan. 21.

Panel Discussion
The Metcalf Chateau: Hawai‘i’s Abstract Expressionists and Their Work
Jan 13 • 2pm • Henry R. Luce Gallery • Free with exhibition admission

Register online at
Don’t miss this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get the inside scoop on Hawai‘i’s most famous group of artists from people who know them and their pioneering work. On the panel: Nancy Conley, art collector; John Koga, artist; Marcia Morse, art historian and critic; Theresa Papanikolas, HoMA Deputy Director of Art and Programs.
Part of programming for the exhibition Abstract Expressionism: Looking East from the Far West, on view through Jan. 21.

AbEx in the City Bicycle Tour
Sunday • Jan 7 • 9am-11am • 9:30-11:30am Beretania • $20 general / $10 museum members
Register online at

See the exhibition Abstract Expressionism: Looking East from the Far West, then take a two-wheel cruise downtown to explore related works by Tadashi Sato, Isamu Noguchi, Satoru Abe, and other public art made possible by the state’s pioneering Art in State Buildings Law. The tour begins and ends at the museum. BYOB (bring your own bike) or grab a Biki from the station in front of the museum!
Part of programming for the exhibition Abstract Expressionism: Looking East from the Far West, on view through Jan. 21.

Kadomatsu Workshop
Sunday Dec  3 •  10am–3pm • Spalding House • $45 general / $35 museum members
Register online at

Kadomatsu (“gate pine” in English) is the traditional Japanese New Year decoration made of pine and bamboo that pops up in many Hawai‘i homes this time of year. Learn about the history, design and symbolism of the kadomatsu from kadomatsu maker Rick Hoo. He will teach participants how to make a contemporary version to with components sourced locally and from Japan.

Rick Hoo has been making classic kadomatsu for many years, first with Temari and now with the Kuhio Lions Club of Honolulu. Every year numerous businesses and private residences order kadomatsu from him and his fellow Lions Club members.

Holiday Felting Workshop
Sunday Dec 10 • 9:30am–12:30pm • Spalding House • $35, $25 museum members
Register online at

Participants can create holiday cheer with textile artist Wendy Ikeda, one of the winners of the Museum Shop’s Art-o-Mat contest last year. She will lead students through felting basics to create ubercute felt snowmen. High-res image available.

Handcrafted Cordials and Syrups Workshop
Saturday Feb 10 • 3–5pm • Spalding House Café • $45 general / $35 museum members.
Register online at

Tamara Kong and Jenny Leung will teach you how to craft three different bases—calamansi or citrus squash, mint sekanjabin and toasted rice—for cocktails and mocktails using fresh fruits, vegetables, and herbs—some of which are sourced from the Spalding House garden! Bases will include different types of sugar and vinegar, and are subject to fruit availability. 


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About the Honolulu Museum of Art

One of the world’s premier art museums, the Honolulu Museum of Art presents international caliber special exhibitions and features a collection that includes Hokusai, van Gogh, Gauguin, Monet, Picasso and Warhol, as well as traditional Asian and Hawaiian art.

Located in two of Honolulu’s most beautiful buildings, visitors enjoy two cafés, gardens, and films and concerts at the theater. The museum is dedicated to bringing together great art and people to create a more harmonious, adaptable, and enjoyable society in Hawai’i.


Honolulu Museum of Art: 900 S. Beretania Street
Honolulu Museum of Art Spalding House: 2411 Makiki Heights Drive
Honolulu Museum of Art School: 1111 Victoria Street
Honolulu Museum of Art at First Hawaiian Center: 999 Bishop Street
Honolulu Museum of Art Doris Duke Theatre: 901 Kinau Street (at rear of museum)


Honolulu Museum of Art: Tues–Sun 10 am–4:30pm; closed Monday.

Honolulu Museum of Art Spalding House: Tues–Sun 10am–4pm; closed Monday.

Admission (permits entry to both museums on the same day):

$20 general admission; $10 Hawai‘i residents and active duty military living in Hawai‘i; children 18 and under are free.

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