But unlearning paradise has precedent in Chiu’s practice, as evidenced by “Paradise Now?: Contemporary Art from the Pacific,” the 2004 exhibition she curated at the Asia Society and Museum in New York. Rethinking Hawai’i beyond the prism of leisure intervenes in what scholar Edward Said has described as the Western imaginary of Asia-Pacific Oceania made possible by colonial histories. Paraphrasing fellow member Kahu’āina Broderick, Chiu further reiterated that “we recognize those who are with us and those who have practiced elsewhere on this show” through social and climate justice.
2022 Hawaii Triennial highlights local culture in global exposure
The complexity of these stories is further affirmed through the selection of artists, which includes , , Gaye Chan and Momoyo Torimitsu, among others. Showcasing locally and globally established artists was a way to complicate the way we generally perceive these artists and highlight the influence of the culture of the Asia-Pacific ocean territories to a global audience.
Chiu expanded on this point by pointing to Gates’ sculpture series of tarred ships he started in 2021, “Preservation Exercise.” These vessels see Gates working with Japanese ceramic traditions, imbuing them with the cultural histories and work of West African and Black Americans. Gates’ work is on display in the Japan Gallery at the Honolulu Museum of Art. This staging not only offers audiences a different perspective of Gates’ practice that is under-examined by institutions and art historians, but also complicates his own practices of disrupting monolithic interpretations of blackness and darkness. Japanese culture. The latter is both an exciting and necessary intervention on these representations.