The 10 Most-Read Flux Hawaii Stories of 2021

phil jung hawaii oahu
Image by Phil Jung

A look back at the most popular online stories this year.

In 2021, which was another challenging year for many, it seems readers continued to find moments of reflection, reclamation, and restoration, predominately in pieces that took a hard look at Hawai‘i’s landscape — from both the natural and the built environment.

10. “Questioning Home in the Archipelago,” by Tina Grandinetti

An urban researcher on how the pandemic, and the looming flood of evictions, have compounded Hawai‘i’s already dire housing crisis.

9. “A Non-Profit Wants to Save Every Neighborhood Tree in Honolulu,” by Natalie Schack

For floral artist Tamara Rigney, Treehooo is a love letter to—and a rescue plea for—Hawai‘i’s urban forests.

8. “Recalling Hawaiian Place Names, an Act of Honor and Resistance,” by N. Ha‘alilio Solomon

A history of militarization and commercial development has often left Hawai‘i’s inoa ‘āina (traditional place names) silenced. Can one truly honor Hawaiian places without acknowledging the important nature of inoa ‘āina?

7. “Carissa Moore Fulfills a Beloved Surfer’s Dream,” by Kylie Yamauchi

The Kānaka ‘Ōiwi athlete didn’t just witness Duke Kahanamoku’s wish of seeing surfing become an Olympic sport — she won gold. Now, as surfing’s first female Olympian to win gold, Carissa Moore reflects on what’s next.

6. “Unthreading a Quilting Controversy,” by Alexis Cheung

The latest instances by American designers appropriating the distinctly local artform of Hawaiian quilting begs the question: Is there a pono way for a fashion brand to utilize its patterns?

5. “The Pandemic Diaries: Hawai‘i Writers Reflect on Covid-19,” by Flux Hawaii

Written in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, these personal essays by a native historian, visual artist, urban researcher, and travel writer stitch together the complicated emotions and societal issues that affect everyday island living.

4. “On The Virtue of Weeds,” by Timothy A. Schuler

Vacant and destitute to the eye, upon closer inspection Honolulu’s fallow spaces are brimming with much-needed lessons, proving that these passed-over realms can be our greatest classroom.

3. “An Artful Dialogue with Dane Nakama,” by Mitchell Kuga

In his 2021 gallery shows, Mukashi Mukashi and Talk Story, artist and viral TikTok creator Dane Nakama presents a love letter to local culture and a sly critique of Hawai‘i’s blunt realities.

2. “Phil Jung Captures a Different Side of Hawai‘i,” by Phil Jung

The photographs of Phil Jung explore the social landscapes and identity of Hawai‘i through personal spaces and locality.

1. “Exploring Vladimir Ossipoff’s Pālehua Cottage,” by Timothy A. Schuler

A simple, little-known cottage designed by Vladimir Ossipoff laid the blueprint for the lasting homes of the master of Hawaiian Modernism.

2021 Year in Review