Graffiti for good. That's how John "Prime" Hina - executive director of the Oahu-based nonprofit 808 Urban- sees it.
Hina's group uses art, especially graffiti arts and murals, to discuss cultural and political issues in local low-income neighborhoods, with the help of artists, volunteers and community organizers.
"It's important to us to convey that the graffiti art form has evolved from the tagging/ bombing status it held in the '80s to where it is today - a process with a what, where and why, a means of embracing culture and new ideas and visualizing those ideas as a group," Hina said.
Taryn Alessandro’s “Island Secret”
Hina led a workshop Saturday with a dozen isle teens titled "Know Your History" at the Hui No'eau Visual Arts Center. With Hina and artist Chris Esteron, the students created a piece that depicts the past, present and future of Maui through the eyes of its youth, according to Hui Youth Programs Manager Kelly McHugh.
The mural workshop Saturday was the culmination of a weeklong intensive where the students from Baldwin, King Kekaulike, Kihei Charter, Lahainaluna and Seabury high schools learned about the history and context of the graffiti arts movement. Focusing on the importance of culture through visual storytelling, participants learned basic aerosol can control, technique, safety and concept development.
"We're raising the bar on individual expressionism," McHugh said. "By requiring youth to work together, share ideas, compromise, collaborate, voice their opinions, listen to the opinions of others, identify strengths and acquire new ones, we're mobilizing youth from different walks of life to work collectively in a strategic, positive direction."
As the fifth installment in the Hui's developing mural arts program, which seeks to educate, empower and inspire Maui's next generation through arts-based collaborations with schools and community organizations, the mural will be on display during the Hui's annual Youth Arts Exhibition, starting Saturday, July 30, through Aug. 13. For details, visit www.huinoeau.com.
Uncover, layer by layer, the mixed media work of Lahaina artist Taryn Alessandro, who will appear at Images Fine Art Gallery from 7 to 10 p.m. Friday.
Alessandro, who has a bachelor's degree in fine arts from Boston University, paints "everyday experiences using harsh materials like paper, resin, corrugated cardboard and gold leaf to juxtapose a comparison between what is human and what is not," according to a gallery release.
The Connecticut native said she now finds inspiration in island living.
Images Fine Art is located at 900 Front St., Lahaina, directly behind the Hard Rock Caf. Free parking is available. For more information, call 662-0884 or visit Imagesinc.com.
Joshua Greenberg's exhibition "2264 Degrees Fahrenheit" opened last weekend at Paia Tattoo Parlor.
Greenberg's sculpture collection, created in Haiku and inspired by time split between land and sea, is named for the highest temperature his pieces endure before completion.
His work includes "newly discovered indigenous species like the Strawberry Guava Terrier and clay sculptures of iconic legends like Amelia Earhart, Albert Einstein and Hernando Cortes," according to a release.
Also at the space, a figure drawing session will be held at 6:30 p.m. Sunday. Hosted by Tania Arens, drawing starts at 7 p.m. sharp. Cost of model is split among participants; bring supplies.
Paia Tattoo Parlor is located upstairs at 120 Hana Highway. For details, www.paiatattooparlor. com.
Capture Hawaii's marine life in a photo for a chance to win a year membership to the Maui Ocean Center and free admission to the Maui Photo Festival in August. The "I Love Marine Life!" contest is open to everyone. Other guidelines are available by calling 270-7000; deadline to enter is Monday, Aug. 1.