hidden honolulu.

The Honolulu Academy of Arts.

If I could bring a sleeping bag I’d live here. Right here, in this courtyard.

I’m in love with this museum.

The HAA has an incredible collection of galleries. My favorite so far is the Asian Arts Collection which includes a breathtaking Pan-Asian Buddhism exhibit. Of course photos aren’t allowed in the galleries, but the website has a comprehensive on-line gallery.

They do allow photo’s in the courtyards however, so I snapped a few shots of the exterior shell that protects these truly beautiful galleries.

While exploring the museum, I was incredibly startled by a barefoot woman wearing a solid red dress, carrying only a small leather book in her hand, slowly but mindfully pacing the courtyard. She seemed ghostly. Especially after leaving a gallery that housed so many sacred Buddhist relics.

A few minutes later I spotted a man, dressed in red, slowly pacing – like a twin to the ghostly woman.

After pinching myself, realizing that I hadn’t seen an art museum ghost dressed in red, I asked a nearby security guard what was going on & he kindly pointed out that it was an acting exhibit called Speaking in Silence, a part of performance artist Ernesto Pujol’s Walking Ground.

Explained via the HAA website:

The exhibition title, Walking Ground, reflects Pujol’s performance practice of pilgrimage, or walking, and the notion of sacred ground, his belief in the sacredness of places. This first ever museum thematic survey of Pujol’s walking performances is a partial overview of this aspect of his work during the past 10 years through selected drawings, photographs, videos/slide shows, and objects generated by 16 of his projects.

I must admit – upon first impression, the girl in red totally caught me off guard. She had an eerie presence and certainly provoked my curiosity. And since I fell in love with the Honolulu Academy of Arts the minute I walked in the building, the claim of her walking on sacred ground seemed genuine. There are so many sacred artifacts in this museum. Artifacts and relics that tell stories. They take you somewhere you’ve never been – and if you listen they might give you a sacred insight into your own self.

On my first tour of a new museum, I always like to go alone.

Nothing wrong of course with experiencing it with company, but sometimes if you truly want to experience something at your own pace, you need to do it solo. So on Friday I went tout seul – all alone. Then I came home, giddy with excitement, wanting my husband to experience HAA for himself. And today I went again, with us together. Me wandering off on my own, allowing room for him to experience what was deemed significant on his own.

And so we decided together, that if we could live in a museum – we would.

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3 thoughts on “hidden honolulu.

  1. HI Candace, Not sure if I said this already, but kudos to you for your new blog! We are heading to Hawaii in the fall, and will definitely check out the HAA. Lovely photos. Cheers!

    • Thank you! That’s great that you’re planning a trip here! If you need any vacation ideas for things to do, places to stay, eat etc feel free to email me! (journalfemme@gmail.com)

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