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Encounters with Paradise: Views of Hawaii and Its People, 1778-1941


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ISBN 10: 0937426156 / ISBN 13: 9780937426159
Published by Honolulu Academy of Art, Honolulu, 1992
Soft cover
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Bibliographic Details

Title: Encounters with Paradise: Views of Hawaii ...

Publisher: Honolulu Academy of Art, Honolulu

Publication Date: 1992

Binding: Paperback

Edition: First paperback printing

About this title


This book documents artistic views of Hawaii and its people from 1778 to 1941. Since the beginning of the era of European exploration in the Pacific, the Hawaiian Islands have been the subject of thousands of paintings, prints and drawings. In this study, David W. Forbes frames the context in which visiting and resident artists experienced and portrayed the islands, and presents the finest of their works, to reveal a continuum of dramatic changes affecting Hawaii and its people over a period of more than 160 years. The earliest paintings are by John Webber, official artist for Captain James Cook's third Pacific voyage, arriving in Hawaii in 1778. Other explorer-artists followed as, in the mid-19th century, did Western missionaries and traders. First whaling and then sugar dominated the islands economy. Artists of the period produced pictures that reflected the colourful Hawaiian 1ife and customs of the time. Late in the 19t century, with the arrival of artists such as Charles Furneaux, Joseph Strong and Jules Tavernier, a distinctive school of Hawaiian painting developed, known as the Volcano School. With the dawning of the 20th century, art in Hawaii reflected the diminishing isolation of the islands and the emergence of a multicultural modernist tradition. All periods are presented in detail in this work, which presents not only the geography, culture, history and beauty of Hawaii - but also the character, background and training of the artists who tried to capture them. This book is a tribute to the pictorial richness and diversity of Western encounters with Hawaii.

From Library Journal:

This is the catalog of a one-time-only exhibition of the first artistic visions of Hawaii. Primarily the work of European and American artists (no work by non-Europeans is known to exist), it opens with sketches circa January 1778 as Cook's Discovery anchored off the coast of Kauai. "Artists first accompanied voyages to the Pacific to record scientific data. . . . The positive scientific value of having a professionally trained landscape and portrait artist aboard was obvious." Perhaps the most interesting contributions here are of important, little-known works held by foreign institutions. The power and mystery of Hawaii's volcanoes generated the famous "Volcano School" of the artists Furneaux, Tavernier, and Strong; also included are works of emerging Hawaii Modernism, beginning in 1890. Accompanied by first-rate, extensive historical background and analysis, this exquisite volume is highly recommended for all art and history collections.
- Kevin M. Roddy, Univ. of Hawaii at Hilo Lib.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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