Friday, December 6, 2013

The Songs of the Fifty States: Hawai'i

(What is "The Songs of the Fifty States"?)

"Crab Claw Ginger" by Georgia O'Keeffe, under sponsorship from Dole Pineapple.


Size: 28,311 km2 (42rd)

2012 Population: 1,392,313 (40th)

Statehood: 1959 (50th). 

American Human Development Index: 5.73 (8th -- way out of order)

Art Mecca: The Honolulu Museum of Art is the major player in terms of paintings of the European tradition and such like.  Mrs.5000 and I swept through a few days ago and found it a charming and welcoming, probably underpatronized, institution with a robust regional collection.  "Robust regional collection" means, here as elsewhere, lesser-but-still-quite-good paintings by names on the A-list hung next to very impressive paintings by names that sound vaguely familiar.  There is also, as you might expect, a very strong collection of Asian arts.

There was until recently a separate entity called The Contemporary Museum, but it merged with the then "Honolulu Academy of Arts" in 2011 to form the HMA.  From the tone of a FAQ about the merger, we can deduce that the Academy was by far the dominant partner in the merger, and that plenty of fans of TCM felt like their institution had been more or less devoured.  Bummer.

In the state's much smaller second city, the Hilo Art Museum opened with great promise and a credible starter collection in 2007, but crashed and burned in 2009.

There are of course a number of institutions dedicated to the traditional arts and culture of Hawai'i and Polynesia. In fact, I daresay that if you are specifically interested in Hawaiian art, this is probably the U.S. state with the richest offerings available.

Michael 5000's Hawai'i

First Visited: November 23, 2013 (50th)
Most Recently Visited: December 3, 2013 (2nd)

First Run In: November 25th, 2013 (17th)
Best Run: 4.01 miles, Honolulu, November 25th, 2013.

Have Admired the Visual Arts In: Yes (see above).
Have Geohashed In: Once, unsuccessfully: Expedition #152.
Have Slept Overnight In: Yes.

Counties Visited: 2/5 (tied for 49th)
% Complete: 40% (24th)

Mrs. 5000's Counties Visited: 2/5
% Complete: 40%
Mrs.5000 First Visited: November 23, 2013 (50th)

Atlas of All Roads Travelled

Plans and Aspirations

It's easy enough to imagine various scenarios in which I might find myself back in Hawai'i.  But, it's even easier to imagine that the trip just finished was a one-time deal.


Morgan said...

"Second, smaller city?" I thought that Hawai'i didn't have cities.

Michael5000 said...

Well, Hawai'i doesn't have legal municipalities. Local government is handled by the four main counties (the fifth county is legal contrivance that protect the remaining residents of a defunct leper colony. True story!). But that doesn't keep people from gathering together in recognizable cities and towns -- although there are not many of them that look like towns as we know them here on the big continent.

gl. said...

bummer about the geohash. but i'm really surprised you didn't take 11 all the way to meet up with hilo to finish the circumnavigation. (i did!)