Sweet memory—“Blue Koolau Mountains”

25 05 2014
Blue Koolau Mountains by Rebekah Luke

“Blue Koolau Mountains” by Rebekah Luke. The study of shapes and values and their relationship is what makes this oil sketch abstract.

The afternoon of day 2 of the Native Hawaiian Arts Market in Honolulu. Many visitors to the Bishop Museum have stopped by the display of my landscape paintings and admired them, but no sales. The sky is threatening thunder showers, and DH who is my “easel” is hinting to pack up.

My things are high-priced items for the average craft fair, so I don’t expect any volume. If I make one sale, it is a good day. I make up my mind that the next person who stops will go away with a new piece of art. It’s a young couple.

“You know,” I say, “I haven’t sold anything all weekend. If you are art collectors and you see something you like, I’ll work with you on the price.”

They discuss something and then show me an image on her iPhone.

“Do you have this one?” she asks. It’s my “Blue Koolau Mountains” from my website. A tiny 5″ x 7″ oil sketch made in 2008!

“I do! But it’s not here. It’s a small one. If you’d like it I can deliver it tomorrow. Where do you live?”

They explain that they live in Minnesota and are leaving Honolulu tomorrow, Memorial Day. They saw my paintings at the Native Hawaiian Arts Market last year when they lived in Hawaii; then they moved to Minnesota. They explain they were looking for something with the colors of “Blue Koolau Mountains,” found me online (obviously), read that I would be at the Bishop Museum today, and came looking!

Oh, for goodness’ sake! “If you want it, I’ll ship it to Minnesota for you at no extra charge,” I say. I close the sale, and everyone goes home happy in the rain. Some things take a long time, but I’m willing to wait. I hope they like the wide gold frame I chose.

Thank you, Lovey! Mahalo e ke Akua!

Copyright 2014 Rebekah Luke



Let me escort you on a fine art tour

10 05 2014

Counting the number of places to exhibit my art is like counting my blessings. All of a sudden my calendar is full. I’m excited to share my summer “fine art tour” of fresh, new work with you. If you have never viewed my paintings in person, this season offers multiple venues. Mark you calendar. My “tour” starts this afternoon, just in time for Mothers Day!

"Kalo Collage," 15" x 30" hand-dyed paper on canvas. $385.

“Kalo Collage,” 15″ x 30″ hand-dyed paper on canvas.

“Collages & A Bit of Clay at Ho‘omaluhia.” A jewel-like showcase of collages and fine craft items. 2D and 3D works by sister artists Joy Ritchey, Dorothy Brennan, Hiroko Shoultz, Barbara Guidage, Susan Rogers-Aregger (who wrote the book on paper dyeing and collage), and me! These are my two very first collages and the most recently completed art pieces of mine. At the Visitor Center Lecture Room at Ho‘omaluhia Botanical Garden, end of Luluku Road, Kaneohe, Oahu. Daily through June 30, 2014, 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Free admission. The items may be purchased off-site by making arrangements with Susan, phone 808 395-4702, email sraoahu@hawaii.rr.com.

"Hydrangea Collage," 30" x 15" hand-dyed paper on canvas. $385.

“Hydrangea Collage,” 30″ x 15″ hand-dyed paper on canvas. Sold.









“The MAMo: Maoli Arts Month Silent Auction.” A bonus opportunity for attendees of the MAMo Wearable Art Show at the Hawaii Theatre, downtown Honolulu, up in the Weyand Room, Wednesday, May 21, 2014. Please contact the theater box office for more information about the evening fashion show.

"Heliconia in Vase," 14" x 18" oil on canvas board, to the highest bidder

“Heliconia in Vase,” 14″ x 18″ oil on canvas board, silent auction item

"Red Trunks," 16" x 20" ink on canvas giclée reproduction, re-marked and re-signed, to the highest bidder

“Red Trunks,” 16″ x 20″ ink on canvas giclée reproduction, re-marked and re-signed, silent auction item

“The MAMo Native Hawaiian Arts Market.” Native Hawaiian artists and craftsmen wrap up Maoli Arts Month at the Bishop Museum, May 24 and 25, 9 a.m to 5 p.m. Entrance on Bernice Street in Honolulu. I will bring to market my inventory of original oil paintings and selected giclée reproductions. This is a chance to meet many other Native Hawaiian artists, watch some demonstrations, and support their work. $5 reduced price of admission for kamaaina (Hawaii residents) and military with valid ID gets you in to the market and all museum exhibits. This is a deal!

“Ko‘olauloa Hawaiian Civic Club Diamond Emerald Anniversary.” Brunch, Hawaiian music entertainment, and silent auction. Turtle Bay Resort, Kuilima, Oahu, June 14, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.  I am placing two landscape paintings–one of Ko‘olauloa and one of Ko‘olaupoko—into the silent auction. Individual tickets to the 90th anniversary party are $100 per person. Please contact president Ululani Beirne, 808 237-8856, or Francine Palama, 808 341-9881, for tickets.

"Kamehameha Highway and Kaaawa Place," 16" x 20" oil on canvas, at auction

“Kamehameha Highway and Kaaawa Place,” 16″ x 20″ oil on canvas, silent auction item


"Heeia," 24" x 18" oil on canvas

“Heeia,” 24″ x 18″ oil on canvas, silent auction item

Beginning Oil Painting Lessons by Rebekah Luke. I have scheduled my Painting I course for adults starting June 21, and extending through Oct. 25, 2014, at my physical studio in Kaaawa, Oahu. Twelve sessions on selected Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Lessons generally follow those taught by the late colorist Gloria Foss. Tuition is $300. Cost of materials and supplies is additional. Those who have this on their bucket list, please email rebekahluke@hawaii.rr.com for complete details.

“Pacific Cup Craft Fair.” Come visit my booth at this event held in conjunction with the Pacific Cup yacht race from San Francisco to Kaneohe. Kaneohe Yacht Club, 44-503 Kaneohe Bay Drive, Kaneohe, Oahu, July 25, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Images of beautiful Kaneohe Bay.

"Bayfront," 18" x 24" oil on canvas board

“Bayfront,” 18″ x 24″ oil on canvas board


So many blessings! Thanks for coming along on my tour! ~ Rebekah

Copyright 2014 Rebekah Luke



Native artists at the Bishop Museum

22 05 2011

The enjoyment for today consisted of going to the Bishop Museum to show my oil paintings alongside other Native Hawaiian artists at the art mart that is part of the MAMo (Maoli Arts Month) Festival in Hawaii. It happens every May.

The Museum booked DH, who is a volunteer docent, to guide a group from a philosopher’s conference on a 1-1/2 hour tour of Hawaiian Hall, making it doubly worthwhile for the two of us.

Ten minutes before show time, we arrived to find our spot next to my artist friend Momi Greene who came from Hawaii island with her decorated ipu (native gourd containers).

Me and my friend Momi Greene. Momi grows a native Hawaiian gourd and decorates them with carving and natural dyes she makes herself in the style that was done traditionally on the island of Niihau.

Years of art fence and craft fair experience paid off as we arrived ten minutes before show time, i.e. late. I saw some dark clouds as we drove over the mountain, and yes, we set up in the rain.

The paintings were fine; oil doesn’t like water. I just shake and blot them dry. DH staked the easels into the ground, and I attached extra ties, a good thing because gusty trade winds blew down from the valley throughout the day.

My brother-in-law Jon, in town from Oregon, came by to meet Momi in person because until today they had only been Facebook friends.

DH and Jon with the Bishop Museum's main building in the background

I loved the continuous live Hawaiian entertainment all day long.

Hula dancers wear long yellow plumeria lei

DH and I made some purchases:

I bought—with cash from trading my no-longer-wanted gold and silver items—some things from other artists, including a nifty re-designed T-shirt. I always try to buy from other artists where I am selling. The designer, using scissors, cuts away parts of the original garment, slits holes in the knit, weaves in contrasting colors or ties the fabric in creative ways to make a one-of-a-kind top that is truly styling and all the rage at the Native Hawaiian art mart. I plan to post a photo of me modeling it soon!

Yesterday in a gust of wind one of Momi’s ipu broke. It looked like it could be glued, but she said she’ll stitch it back together, making the stitching part of the design and giving the ipu new life and a story. When I relayed that to DH, he immediately told Momi of our plans to take a trip to her island and that he wanted to buy the ipu after she stitched it. That piece would be really special and would she kapu (reserve) it for him, we’d pick it up next month.

She said, “Okay, do you want to see it first?” DH can be impulsive at times, but he’s a good buyer and appreciates fine Native Hawaiian-made artwork.

What I realized and appreciated the most at the end of the day was how much the art by Native Hawaiians has improved, including the marketing of it. If you are in Honolulu next May, please plan on attending some of the activities of Maoli Arts Month.

Copyright 2011 Rebekah Luke

View of the art market—what will tomorrow bring?

22 05 2010

Shall we pick this one . . .

... or that one up there?

No one bought much art today at the Native Hawaiian Arts Market, but there were plenty of art appreciators.  I am happy to show my work and talk about it with others. I met some very nice people, and some friends stopped by.

The artists are expecting a Sunday crowd tomorrow, the 23rd, at the Bishop Museum, on the last event day of Maoli Arts Month. (Please see two posts earlier for info.)

Miss Marvelous liked “Gas Pumps in Paradise,” an earlier work painted in 1993 of the 7-Eleven and gas station in Kaaawa the day Bula Logan led a sovereignty march along Kamehameha Highway.

The painting was part of my “Painting the Town” collection of all the public structures in Kaaawa: the post office, the fire station, the school, the bath house, the library (bookmobile), and two bridges.

I remember organizing with Pat, the then director of Swanzy Beach Park, an art show reception to open the new covered lanai for the park facility. I showed the paintings with environmental portrait photography of the people who worked in the buildings. The only advertising was a hand-painted roadside sign by the summer fun kids that read, “Everybody come.” And everybody did!  Times have changed.

Rather than keep “Gas Pumps in Paradise” as a leaner becoming shop worn in the studio, I’ve marked it down to $200.00, solid koa frame included. The amount is half the original price.

Miss Marvelous enjoys the art show with her mom

Copyright 2010 Rebekah Luke

Let’s meet at the Native Hawaiian Arts Market at the Bishop Museum

14 05 2010

Welcome Spring

Looking for a venue to show my paintings, I asked for and am granted a spot at a two-day Hawaiian native arts fair—the Native Hawaiian Arts Market & Keiki Art Festival. I can’t say how many artists are showing in this 5th annual MAMo (Maoli Arts Month) event, but anytime there is a gathering of Hawaiians expressing themselves it’s worth noticing, especially if one lives in the Islands. It’s a good thing to keep up with the host culture of where you live.

So please save the dates: May 22 and 23, Bishop Museum grounds, entrance on Bernice street between Kalihi street and Kapalama avenue in Honolulu, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Special admission (see below).

With Native fine art and craftmanship, art that is now and art that is part of our ongoing living history, one can appreciate how the indigenous, or maoli, peoples, are evolving and what we have to say about ourselves, our land, and the universe.

The artwork you see will be for sale. It is a joy to support Native Hawaiian made products in Hawaii. At the Arts Market buyers can know that the Hawaiian artists can keep all the money earned from their original creations, as opposed to giving a commission to a gallery. Several sponsors and grant makers, led by the PA‘I Foundation, make this possible.

My own paintings, the ones on the PAINTINGS link of this website and several new canvases, are in the studio in different stages toward completion, gearing up for this event. The last time I exhibited actual pieces in a public gallery was in 2007 in a group show with my hapa Chinese cousins at Gallery on the Pali in Nuuanu. So, I’m very excited to return to the art scene in Honolulu.

This week I’ll be signing, varnishing, framing, inventorying, and pricing the work while DH builds a few more display easels. DH is my main easel, and perhaps he will take a break from his Bishop Museum docent gig to join me in greeting you when you come next Saturday and Sunday.

You’ll have a fabulous time. Meet the artists and talk to them about their work. Bring $5 admission. That will get you into the Bishop Museum galleries including the new Hawaiian Hall, as well. Bring a lot more kala (money) to buy some art. Artists have to eat too. 😉 Thank you and all the organizers and supporters of Maoli Arts!

Copyright 2010 Rebekah Luke

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