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'Walk down Argentina Way'

by Joy Kikuchi, Sience and Environment editor


If you haven’t seen it yet, don’t miss the last week of Roger Whitlock’s vivid, colorful record of his trip to South America. Whitlock spent three weeks there in March, and in Down Argentina Way, Argentina and Uruguay come to life on the walls of HPU’s Art Gallery.

According to the art gallery link on the HPU Web site, in each new location, Whitlock would, as he tells it, decide what he was going to paint, set up his easel, then paint the scene before him “alla prima—in one go. In this way he attempted “to capture not only my impression of the place, but also its special light,” he explained.

Click on image for larger view

There is a definite glow to each painting, and each has an immediacy that seems to make it spring to life from the walls of the gallery. Many of the scenes are of streets, with people carrying on with their daily activities, all so casual and immediate that it is easy for the viewer to feel transported into Whitlock’s scene.

One especially stunning painting is of the Iguazu Falls in Argentina, entitled The Morning Mist Rises. One can almost feel the lush greenery, hear the roar of the falling water, and taste the fresh coolness of its spray.

This was Whitlock’s first time to these countries. “Painting in places you’ve never been before is always an eye-opening experience,” he said, adding: “It’s an adrenaline rush.”

Whitlock is a popular local artist who has been painting with watercolor since 1985. He has won many awards in Hawai‘i Watercolor Society exhibitions, and many of his paintings have found places on the walls of local corporations and collectors. His work can be seen regularly in galleries and art shows here and on the mainland.

The exhibit continues through Nov. 19.


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