Spend Valentine’s Night at the Hawai‘i State Art Museum: Connecting Hearts with Art

Need a date idea for Valentine’s Day? HiSAM has you covered.

Editor’s Note: Through our partnership with the Hawai‘i State Art Museum, HONOLULU Magazine publishes a monthly blog written by Lisa Shiroma, owner of the HiSAM Museum Gallery Shop.

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“Paradise and Groves,” Pat Catlett, oil painting, 1977
Image: Hawai‘i State Foundation on Culture and the Arts


Planning a romantic date for Valentine’s Day can be tough—finding the right gift, meal and activity that all say, “I actually know what you like and didn’t just throw this together at the last minute,” even if maybe you did. The Hawai‘i State Art Museum has done the work for you with its first Valentine’s Night at HiSAM on Friday, Feb. 14.


Start with a romantic walk through the museum, which isn’t normally open after dark except on First Fridays. Play “where’s the chubby cherub?” with one of Sally French’s paintings. Does being with your date make you feel like you’re floating above the clouds? Take a selfie in front of the voluminous photograph, “Haleakala #23,” by Christopher Cole.


Or go outside and find a secluded spot in the Sculpture Garden to enjoy live music by award-winning local crooner Izik. His latest album, &Bougainvillea, features such romantic jams as “Strawberry Moon,” with lyrics that include “I am the sum of two lovers who held hands and kissed under the sky / So what better reason than to love you and hold you and kiss you while we lie under the Strawberry Moon.”


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There will also be activities to keep the fun going all night. Get your heart racing by attempting to draw your partner without looking down at your paper. End results not quite what the other person expected? Don’t worry. Just tell them the drawing is an expression of your love and should be framed.


Once you work up an appetite, try all of the delectable bites (including aphrodisiacs) by chef Brandon Lee of Artizen by MW. Be sure to grab a glass of wine from the bar for a festive toast.



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After dinner, create your own fresh flower arrangement with a tropical flower bar pop-up by Andrew Mau of Island Boy. Pick from a curated assortment of flowers to customize your own beautiful arrangement. Once you have your bouquet, capture the evening with a commemorative photo courtesy of Photo Ops Hawai‘i in front of the gorgeous “Paradise and Groves” painting by Pat Catlett. Inspired by a poem by William Wordsworth, this vibrant painting of a lush flower garden is the picture-perfect backdrop for you and your special someone.


And psst: You don’t need to have a date to come, and you may even meet someone new with speed dating hosted by MC Eric Cordeiro.


Feb. 14, Hawai‘i State Art Museum, 250 S. Hotel St., 6 to 9 p.m. Free admission.


Lisa Shiroma

isa Shiroma is the owner of the HiSAM Museum Gallery Shop and runs it with partners Aly Ishikuni-Sasaki and Travis Sasaki from Mori by Art + Flea.

Lisa worked as gallery manager for Koa Art Gallery at KCC from 2014 to 2017.

In July 2017, Lisa, Travis and Aly renovated and reopened the Hawai‘i State Art Museum’s gift shop space as a new art gallery and gift shop “for Hawai‘i artists, by Hawai‘i artists.”