Honolulu Museum of Art

I have been to Oahu several times since 2005 when I was there for six weeks for a medical school rotation (go USUHS!). Even though Oahu, and Waikiki in particular, can be seen as too crowded and touristy, I love it! I have also done new-to-me things on most visits. This time was no exception.

First up, the Honolulu Museum of Art is amazing. It’s where you check-in and board the shuttle to the Shangri-La, but it is a worthwhile destination itself.

The highlights were two temporary exhibits (sorry). The first was a two-gallery immersive, walk-through exhibit by Rebecca Lewis Law. It consisted of thousands of copper-wire strands of botanical specimens hung from the ceiling of two adjacent galleries that were at right angles to each other. It was spectacular and special. The write-up talks about the fragility of nature.For example, there are some found plastics incorporated into the beach-y part. But I kept thinking about Annie Dillard’s writings on the fecundity of nature. It was just so overwhelmingly immersive and awe-inspiring. I really loved it. I went through three times, although not backwards (which is not SMS’ favorite habit of mine!).

Pictures were only allowed at the very end of the tunnel at the artist’s request to amplify the viewer’s experience. If you get a chance to see it (through 9/10/23), I strongly recommend it!

The second exhibit was Noah Harders‘ mask sculptures which were incredible! The masks and photographs of him wearing them were on display. The work is so creative and beautiful- I loved it!

The permanent collections are also pretty cool. I enjoyed the Polynesian Art and Pacific Rim art galleries. I also lucked out and saw a Deborah Butterfield horse. I really like her work. There are two horses near my house- one near the old Sunset magazine headquarters and the other right by Stanford hospital.

There was also a ceiling mounted “Aquarium” by Dale Chihuly.

Overall, I loved this museum. I think the exhibits are thoughtfully presented and the quality of the collection is high. Five stars!

3 thoughts on “Honolulu Museum of Art”

    1. Yes! Deborah Butterfield. I have been seeing more of her work around the Bay Area (horse spotting), but I looked her up and she divides her time between Montana and Hawaii. I love her “driftwood” horses.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: