Art Deco Hawai‘i

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    Eugene Savage (American, 1883-1978). 'Pomp and Circumstance,' 1940. Oil on canvas. Collection Matson.

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    Lloyd Sexton (American, 1912-1990). 'Egrets and Pandanus,' c. 1940s. Oil on canvas mounted as a three-fold screen. Honolulu Museum of Art. Gift of Wallace Alexander Gerbode Foundation, 1990 (5972.1)

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July 03, 2014 - January 11, 2015
Honolulu Museum of Art

Exhibition Overview

The Honolulu Museum of Art presents Art Deco Hawai‘i, the first major museum exhibition to focus on the seductive Hawaiian take on the international Art Deco style, which flourished in the islands from the 1920s to the 1940s. Through works such as murals by Eugene Savage that were commissioned by Matson to hang in the luxury liner Lurline (but never made it due to World War II), paintings and prints by John Kelly and Madge Tennent, Ming’s jewelry, early aloha shirts, tableware and furniture, the exhibition will reveal how Art Deco got an island twist based on Hawai‘i’s natural beauty and fabled past. Viewers will learn how Deco was a big part of the marketing strategy to create and perpetuate an image of Hawai‘i as an unspoiled paradise, luring mainland travelers in search of exotic goods and luxury travel.

This exhibition is made possible with generous support from the Henry Luce Foundation, First Insurance Company of Hawaii, Steve and Susan Chamberlin, and James Corcoran. Additional funding is provided by Tori Richard, Ltd., Helen Gary and Donald and Laura Goo.


Media sponsor: HILuxury

Related event:
For teachers: Museum holds special educators-only tour of "Art Deco Hawaii" with Theresa Papanikolas July 12