Friday, August 7, 2009

"First Fridays" - Honolulu's Art Scene

One of my favorite things to do on the island as a local, is attend Honolulu's "First Friday" events. First Fridays are a collaboration of artists, galleries and local residents who come together to celebrate the artistic culture of the city. All galleries and public museum charge free admission, and folks fill the streets (very popular actually) and set aside the whole evening to gather for the area's largest art scene in the revitalized Chinatown district.I love the arts--and in every medium and form. I love visual arts, the culinary arts, performance art, music and soundscape, media arts...and the art of living itself. As such it is no wonder that I love Honolulu's "First Fridays." I love seeing and knowing that the city has a vibrant, albeit hidden underground art community.
I also enjoy seeing the variety of people who attend the monthly event. It often surprises me to see how many people come out for this event. The celebration begins at 6pm, attracting business professionals coming straight from work. It is a predominately a late-20s to late-40s crowd but because the arts crosses age and generation the event attracts a growing crowd outside this parameter. Attended by mainly local and residents on the islands it's still a hidden find for tourists and visitors.Mark's Arts Garage often has live art demonstrations that correlate with their monthly changing exhibits. I remember when Jon, Andy and I couldn't get over a deathly glass blowing demonstration--a disaster waiting to happen. Four artists were blowing glass on a tiny sidewalk corner--with poles so long they could either hit an onlooker or each other. That was entertainment in of itself. Mark's hosts sculpture, painting, photograph, multi-media works and has nightly stage performances as well including spoken word among others.

For wine lovers, head to "Hsad" which offers free glasses of wine at each month's events. Just purchase a wine glass for $5 and bring it back every First Friday for a free refill every time. Popular restaurants in the area: Indigo, Epic as well as some SF-like lounges like thirty-nine hotel and those next it to (i think, it's been awhile).

Favorite Galleries: Marks Art Garage {first and last photo}, Chinatown Boardroom {two photos above} (for my Heather Brown art), and my favorite corner one (which I can't think of the name right now).

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