Issue 6: Art & Design
Published April 2011
An artist is one who thinks outside the box—with innovation and creativity at the forefront—and often makes do with less. In our Art & Design issue, we celebrate innovation and seeing things just a little bit differently.
Much of what we hear in regards to the arts is dismal. The closing of galleries for lack of revenue, the merging of museums for lack of funding, the migration of young creatives for lack of opportunity. Actually much of what we hear these days in general is dismal. Budget crisis. A failing educational system. Increased homeless – and with that, increased homeless children.
The crisis in Japan certainly doesn’t assuage fears. The HTA, I’m sure, is quivering at the double-digit decreases of tourists from Japan, Hawai‘i’s second largest visitor market. Currently the HTA is looking for new ways to market Hawai‘i and provide our state with a strategic advantage over other competing destinations. Here’s one offered by Jay Jenson, the deputy director of exhibitions and collections at The Contemporary Museum, “While many visitors want the tourist stereotype, many also want to see and experience something of Hawai‘i beyond that. Cultural tourism is mentioned a lot now, and I think to keep visitors coming back, we have to offer alternatives to the sand and sea cliché. Unfortunately, tourism executives have been slow to recognize the potential in cultural tourism for Hawai‘i, so culture and arts rarely gets promoted.”
Justin Cravalho, co-principal designer of Humanhand, in his summation of what it’s like to be a designer said this: “Being a designer is like being a skateboarder. Skateboarding gives you a new way to look at and re-examine your surroundings, and it’s the same in that once you’re designing, you see things differently. Like I look at the way the exterior of this building is falling apart, and I find inspiration because of the way it’s cracking.”
For the sake of our arts community – for the sake of our state – it’s time we all started thinking of ourselves as artists, because an artist is one who thinks outside the box – with innovation and creativity at the forefront – and often makes do with less. In this, our Art & Design issue, we celebrate innovation and seeing things just a little bit differently. Instead of cracks, let’s see color.