It Seemed Like the Future: Works by Fred H. Roster, 1969-2010

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September 03, 2010 - September 26, 2010
Honolulu Museum of Art School


Exhibition Overview

The presents a survey of work by acclaimed Hawai‘i artist Fred H. Roster from 1969 to the present day. Known for his wood, clay, bronze, and assemblage sculptures, his work is included in the collections of the Hawai‘i State Foundation for Culture and the Arts, The Contemporary Museum and the Honolulu Museum of Art.

Roster’s work is an integral part of Honolulu’s built landscape, from the sculpture Atoll, Toll, Total in the Honolulu International Airport to the bronze portrait of Gov. John A. Burns at Aloha Stadium.

The prolific artist has also helped shape the artistic landscape of Hawaii as an educator for more than 40 years, first at the Honolulu Academy of Arts, then at the University of Hawai‘i–Mänoa, where he is now a professor of art and Chairman of the Sculpture Program. 

Many of O‘ahu’s noted young artists have been influenced by Roster. “‘Just imagine all of those passing thoughts and ideas that never become realized,’ Fred said to me once while discussing a project I was working on,” says Aaron Padilla, a past Roster student and now successful artist. “He urged us to consider everything, and not discount that silly idea and the mindless sketch. If we followed those paths, our art would be better because of it.”

In addition, Roster is a co-founder of the acclaimed triennial traveling International Shoebox Sculpture Exhibition, which mixes small-scale works by big names such as Wenda Gu, Tony Smith, Ruth Asawa, and George Rickey with emerging artists both regional and international.