Master paintings of the 1800s at the Bishop Museum

2 04 2017

For the final project in the Painting II class I teach, students select a painting of a master to copy using the grid system and painting section by section. The unveiling was yesterday at the Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum.

Nancy Alejo chose Camille Pissarro’s “The Red Roofs,” 1877, and Bernadette Chan picked Paul Gauguin’s “Parau api (Two Women of Tahiti),” 1892.

“The Red Roofs” by Nancy Alejo after Camille Pissarro

A segment of “Parau api (Two Women of Tahiti)” by Bernadette Chan after Paul Gauguin

My students selected these works independently from each other, but in their presentation, we learned that Pissarro and Gauguin became friends in 1873 and painted together. Pissarro painted with the Impressionists. Gauguin had no formal art training, and his work is post-Impressionist, flat, hard edged and considered symbolic. Pissarro gave money to Gauguin to go to Tahiti.

While at the Bishop Museum we visited The Picture Gallery on the top floor of the entrance tower of Hawaiian Hall. My favorite paintings were the landscapes by D. Howard Hitchcock and the still lifes of fruit dear to my heart (because I have had mountain apples and breadfruit in my own garden) by Margaret Girvin Gillian.

The Picture Gallery at the Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum. Fascinating old images of Hawaii may be viewed here.

If you go:
See for how to get there and for ticket information. Admission is free on Pauahi’s birthday, Dec. 19.
From Waikiki you may take the No. 2 bus and ask the driver to let you off on School street at Kapalama street. Walk downhill toward the ocean to Bernice street and turn right to the entrance at 1525 Bernice Street.

Uncle Pete the storyteller

10 03 2014

Today I want to applaud and give a shout out to DH, or my Darling Husband as he is known here, Papa to his granddaughters in Italy, and Uncle Pete to others. Something very special occurred on Friday during his day at the Bishop Museum in Honolulu where he has been a volunteer docent for about eight years.

Just when he wondered how effective he was with school children, an age group he has only recently addressed in his role as a docent, the Museum’s education staff passed him some mail. “Here.”

He phoned me at the studio at the end of the day with excitement in his voice, “What do you want for dinner? I want to celebrate! Check out my Facebook page.” I read:

A couple weeks ago we gave an hour docent tour to a group of 4th graders from Iolani School. Today I share this book of letters addressed to Uncle Pete, not only giving thanks but validating that these folks listened and reflect. A very humbling and wonderful gift. Mahalo kids from Iolani.


You may click on the photo to enlarge the letter from Josh.

Uncle Pete with the book of thank you notes from Iolani School fourth graders

Uncle Pete in front of Hawaiian Hall at the Bishop Museum with the book of thank you notes from Iolani School fourth graders (Photo by Taueva Fa’otusia)

Of course he was tickled. I’ve always thought being a docent is perfect for Pete. He likes to talk a lot, and he likes history, particularly Hawaiian history. At home, his family just rolls their eyes. In fact, the baby would move her lips with her fingers for that rude sound when she was tired of her Papa talking so much!

But at the Museum, Uncle Pete has a new audience every time. The average length of a docent tour is 25 minutes. He really has to convey the facts and hit his marks. No editorializing! Do you really want to know the history of Hawai‘i in just ten minutes? Uncle Pete can tell you. A whole hour with the fourth graders? He must really have been in his element and enjoyed every minute.

After reading the congratulatory comments from friends on the Facebook post, I have to agree Pete is a gifted storyteller, and the thanks is well deserved. I am so glad his talent and generosity were recognized in this way.

Copyright 2014 Rebekah Luke
Uncle Pete Krape’s regular docent tours at the Bishop Museum are on Friday afternoon in Hawaiian Hall.

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