January 29, 2019


Bishop Museum
Claudette Springer
Ph: (808) 848-4116

Stryker Weiner & Yokota Public Relations, Inc.
Lance Aquino
Ph: (808) 523-8802, ext. 225

Press Contacts

If you are a journalist and would like to receive Museum press releases, would like to coordinate a media visit to the Museum, and or would like to coordinate an interview with a Museum spokesperson, please contact Lance Aquino at lance@strykerweiner.com

Museum Marketing & PR

Claudette Springer – Director of Communications

Please allow for a minimum of 4 weeks advance notice from the requested date and date of receipt for editorial filming.

Commercial Location Filming & Photography

Digital Assets

Hi-res and low-res image non archival downloads are available for editorial use. Click here to request images.  Please allow a minimum 48 hour response from the receipt of your request.

To request images from the Bishop Museum Library and Archives, please allow 4 weeks advance notice from the date of receipt and contact archives@BishopMuseum.org

Kini ke Kua: Transformative Images

Bishop Museum original exhibition explores relationships between kiʻi (images) and people

Honolulu, Hawaiʻi – In less than a month, Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum will showcase its newest original exhibit, which will explore the relationships between kiʻi (images) and people. “Kini ke Kua: Transformative Images” will invite guests to engage with rare and treasured objects from the museum’s collections and from around the Pacific, in addition to new works from a contemporary indigenous artist specially commissioned for “Kini ke Kua.” This multifaceted presentation will encourage guests to carve their own paths in relationship to these revered objects and art forms. The exhibit will be on display in the Joseph M. Long Gallery from Feb. 16–Sept. 2, 2019.

Ki‘i, which refers to images in the Hawaiian language, are a cornerstone of Hawaiian spirituality and can take many forms. Fashioned from wood, stone and other natural materials, ki‘i become embodiments of deity: representations of akua (gods) and ʻaumākua (personal or family guardians). This exhibit will explore some of the ways in which relationships between kiʻi and people may change over time, how some of those changes have occurred, and to what extent such transformations shaped and reshaped images in different times and contexts.

At the center of this exhibition will be a kiʻi gifted to Bishop Museum by Marc and Lynne Benioff in March of 2018. The wooden image will serve as the focal point of the exhibit, and will contribute to the larger dialogue about relationships, spirituality and kiʻi in Hawaiʻi and as they move through the world. The gifted kiʻi will be presented in conversation with rarely-seen historical collections from Bishop Museum. Included in the exhibit will be an original ink and watercolor drawing from Bishop Museum’s Archives by John Webber (1751–1793), the artist on Captain James Cook’s third and final voyage to the Pacific. An Offering before Captain Cook in the Sandwich Islands, which was later made into engravings and widely distributed in published accounts of the voyage, is one of the first two-dimensional representations of kiʻi.

To further enrich the visitor’s understanding of these images through contemporary indigenous lenses, Bishop Museum invited the Hawaiian carving collective Kūpāʻaikeʻe and the renowned Māori artist Lyonel Grant (of the Ngāti Pikiao and Te Arawa tribes) to present works never previously displayed in a museum setting, and tying present, past and future makers and image shapers together. Looking at the practice of carving and the newly acquired ki‘i through other media, the Hawaiian visual artist, musician and genealogist Douglas Poʻoloa Tolentino was also commissioned by the museum to create four pieces inspired by the collections that explore the relationships between ki‘i and kanaka (people).

For more information about “Kini ke Kua: Transformative Images,” visit www.BishopMuseum.org/Kini-ke-Kua. Bishop Museum sincerely thanks Marc and Lynne Benioff for making this exhibition possible.


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Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum

1525 Bernice Street

Honolulu, HI 96817

(808) 847 – 3511

@ Bishop Museum 2018 All Rights Reserved