Altogether: Contemporary Papua New Guinea Art, East-West Center Gallery, Honolulu, HI

Altogether: Contemporary Papua New Guinea Art
29 June – 5 September, 2008
East-West Center Gallery, Honolulu, Hawai‘i

Guest Curator: Dr. Jacquelyn Lewis-Harris

Featured Artists:
Timothy Akis, Jakupa Ako, Wkeng Aseng, Wendi Choulai, Ruki Fame, Elisabet Kauage, Mathias Kauage, Gigmai Kundun, Watu Lopo, Benny Moore, Joe Nalo, Simon Novek, Larry Santana, Taba Silau, Albert Susuve,WakiWaikali, JaneWena, Cecil KingWungi

Located just north of Australia, the independent country of Papua New Guinea (PNG) occupies the eastern half of New Guinea, the second largest island in the world. This land mass and the multiple adjacent islands is home to over six million people. The country hosts the most linguistically diverse population in the world, with over 700 indigenous languages being spoken. PNG’s geography features a wide variety of environments from vast river systems, swamps, grasslands, and mountainous areas, to volcanic islands and tropical rain forests, all of which contribute to the physical and cultural isolation of the people, which has resulted in a wide variety of art styles.

PNG gained its independence from Australia in 1975. This historic event also marked the explosion of the contemporary art movement, through which artists explored the visual interpretation of nationalism. Artists began to conceptualize a new national identity through their art, illustrating what it meant to be a Papua New Guinean as opposed to a clan member. At this time in PNG history there was a concerted movement towards nationhood and anticolonialism expressed in all forms of the arts. In this supportive political and intellectual climate, indigenous writers, sympathetic expatriate academics and leading Papua New Guineans encouraged the development of contemporary visual arts.

This exhibit is organized into three chronological sections: the Early Masters, The Center for Creative Arts/National Art School Artists, and New Art Forms/New Artists. The customary utilitarian and ceremonial art provides cultural context and illustrates the intangible spiritual link of the contemporary to the past.

Special Events:
Sunday, June 29, 2:00-3:30 p.m
Opening festivities, including reception and exhibition walk-through with guest curator Jacquelyn Lewis-Harris, Ph.D.

Sunday, July 13, 2:00-3:30 p.m.
The Drum and the Mask:Time of theTembuan Film and introduction by the filmmaker Caroline Yacoe

Sunday,August 24
, 2:00-3:30 p.m
“The Art of EarlyTimes:Traditional Arts in PNG” Illustrated talk by Jerome Feldman, Ph.D. Professor of Art History at HPU

East-West Center Gallery
John A. Burns Hall, 1601 East-West Road
(corner Dole St. & East-West Rd.)
Gallery hours:Weekdays: 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
Sundays: Noon-4:00 p.m.
Closed Saturdays and holidays
Parking on the UHM campus is
normally free and ample on Sundays.

For further information please visit or call 808-944-7584.