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by Monica Karlstein, staff writer

The 10th annual Hale‘iwa Art Festival will take place in historic Hale‘iwa town, on July 21 and 22 at the Beach Park. Nearly 10,000 people are expected to attend the festival to view art by nearly 140 artists.

“ We want to offer attendees free admission to view and participate in a broad range of visual and performance arts,” said Gary D. Anderson, executive director of Hale‘iwa Arts Festival. He added that the group hopes that visitors will “further their exposure, understanding, and appreciation for culture and the arts.”

J Bennett, from Mokule‘ia, is one of the featured artists at the festival. She is a sculptor, ceramist, jeweler, and painter. Her work will be featured at the festival; and she is now a board member and helped plan this year’s festival.

“The festival is by far the best on the island,” said Bennett, “as far as quality of art, quality of location, and presentation.”

Bennett pointed out that one benefit of the festival is the opportunity for people to spend time with the artists and to see work not exhibited in art galleries.

“ If people—collectors and first-time buyers alike—want to see some fantastic art,” she added, or “get inside the heads of the artists and either ask questions or get more background on works they are considering, this is the place.”

Another of the festival’s artists is Peggy Chun, who donated two of her paintings for the festival’s shirt and poster. Chun doesn’t paint as most artists do. Five years ago, Chun was diagnosed with ALS, an incurable neurological disease. When she couldn’t paint with her right hand, she switched to her left, when she couldn’t paint with that, she did it with her toes, and then with her mouth. Today she paints with her eyes through an electronic paintbrush controlled by the movement of her eyes. Her art can be seen at the festival at booth number 63.

Different kinds of art work can be found at the event, from original paintings to limited editions, from traditional styles to contemporary, in oil, serigraphy, ceramic, photography, acrylic, sculpture, watercolour, fabric, jewelery, or glass.

The weekend of fun and art will start at 10 a.m. both days and will close at 6 p.m. on Saturday and 5 p.m. on Sunday. Hula dancers and singers will perform and Cultural Trolley Tours, guided by the North Shore Chamber of Commerce Historic Preservation Committee, will show visitors Hale‘iwa town and the uniqueness of O‘ahu’s North Shore community.

The festival’s slogan is “Celebrate the arts, and rediscover the artist within.”

To take the Hale‘iwa Arts Festival one step further for those who are interested in art, an Open Studio Tour will be held on May 5 and 6. The tour invites the public to the private studios of five of the festival’s artists.

The studio tour is not sponsored by the Hale‘iwa Arts Festival Organization; however, artists from the festival and even the president of the organization are opening their studios.

For more information about the Open Studio Tour, visit hawaiinorthshoreartists.com. For more information about the festival, visit Haleiwaartsfestival.org/.




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