Mauna Kea mana and Maoli arts


IMG_2177“The moon shines all around her when she sleeps the clouds stand beside her when she weeps… a thousand miles away still I would recall the beauty of Mauna Kea.”

Robert Cazimero set the tone of this year’s MAMo Wearable Art Show with his hauntingly poignant performance of Keola Beamer’s “The Beauty of Mauna Kea,” on May 20 at the Hawaii Theatre. During the song, Cazimero was accompanied by his kāne dancers of Hālau Nā Kamalei O Lililehua, who won the overall award at this year’s Merrie Monarch Festival. Throughout the show, without uttering any words, many models and designers motioned their support for the sacredness of Mauna Kea and their environmental concerns about the controversial project.

Here’s a look at creations from the featured designers:

Maile Andrade with top hat weaver Keoua Nelson and makeup by Jonathan Freitas:


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Wahine Toa with accessories by Keala Designs:IMG_9558 IMG_9611 IMG_9752

Te Ou Tu featuring designers Jeanine Clarkin, Matiu Dallas and Shona Tawhiao:

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Lufi Luteru:

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Marques Marzan:

The fur in Marzan’s collection played off the word “hulu” referring to the cherished one’s in his life. The literal meaning of “hulu” is fur, fleece or wool.IMG_0695

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Keone Nunes:IMG_0094 IMG_0107 IMG_0119IMG_0135

Representatives from The First People’s Fund, a non-profit organization based in South Dakota that supports indigenous artists presented Keone Nunes with the 2015 Jennifer Easton Community Spirit Award. He was recognized for his contribution to perpetuating the Polynesian culture through traditional tattooing (kakau) passed down from his elders. MAMo Wearable Art Show producer Vicky Holt Takamine was a past recipient of the award.

Photos by Lyle Amine.