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  • Downtown Art Center Presents - Taiwan Taitung & Hawai i Arts and Cultural Exchange Project Present: "The Ocean In Us" Exhibition

  • Date: Friday - 7/5/2024
    Time: 5:30 to 8 p.m
    Downtown Art Center
    1040 A Nuuana Avenue
    Honolulu, Hawaii 96717

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Current Main Gallery Exhibition

The Taiwan Taitung & Hawaiʻi Arts and Cultural Exchange Project Presents: "The Ocean In Us" Exhibition at Downtown Art Center in Honolulu, June 7-23, 2024

The Taiwan Haohao Association (Hunter School). Photo courtesy of Shu Lun Wu. 
Honolulu (May 2024) –  The 2024 Taiwan Taitung & Hawaiʻi Arts and Cultural Exchange Project announces its major exhibition, "
The Ocean In Us," a collaborative endeavor between Taitung, Taiwan, and Hawaiʻi, curated by Shu Lun Wu. This exhibition will be held from June 7 - 23, 2024, in Downtown Art Center's Main Gallery, located on the Second Floor of the historic Chinatown Gateway Plaza building at 1041 Nuʻuanu Ave. 

The exhibition itself  is free and open to the public, on view at Downtown Art Center during regular gallery hours:
Tuesday through Saturday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., with a schedule of special workshops to be announced.

A First Friday Opening Reception will be held on Friday, June 7 from 5:30 - 8 p.m.

Accompanying the exhibition will be a one-day special event on Saturday, June 8 from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. at the Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Park in Chinatown, Honolulu at the corner of Bethel and Hotel Streets: The Ocean In Us – Taiwan Taitung Indigenous Tribes Contemporary Performing Arts Showcase will feature an incredible lineup of visiting performers, sharing traditional and contemporary indigenous music, dance and fashion.

Drawing inspiration from the words of Teresia Teaiwa, "We sweat and cry salt water, so we know that the ocean is really in our blood," the curatorial theme reflects the deep-rooted connection between the peoples of the Pacific and the vast expanse of the ocean that surrounds them.

Epeli HauʻOufa, a visionary in the realm of Oceania studies, urged a shift in perspective from continental thinking to embracing the concept of an "ocean of islands." Through this lens, the exhibition aims to rediscover the shared experiences and interconnectedness of Pacific cultures, transcending geographical boundaries and historical divides. At the heart of the exhibition lies the recognition of Taiwan as the northernmost point of the Austronesian cultural circle. Linguistics and paper mulberry gene research have confirmed that Taiwan is the original homeland of Austronesia.

 Through the artistry of contemporary Indigenous artists and the exchange of ideas between Taitung, Hawaiʻi, and the Pacific Islands, the exhibition, happening in parallel with the
13th annual Festival of Pacific Arts and Culture (FESTPAC) during the month of June, will showcase the evolution of Austronesian culture and art from tradition to contemporary expression. Twenty-two visiting artists from several Indigenous Taiwanese regions will showcase traditional art, crafts, music, and dance performances, with the goal of fostering a sense of community and shared identity amidst the ever-changing tides of globalization and environmental change.
Featured Visual Artists: 

Rahic Talif (installation art and Ocean west painting)

Wang Yu-Wen (ceramics and mixed media 2d art)

Charmaine, aka Feiyu (Flying Fish) (oil painting)

Halomei/LIN JUNG YI (bark cloth craft)
Featured Performing Artists:

Sanpuy Katatepan (award-winning musician and singer)

Bulareyaung Dance Company (award-winning dance troupe)

Chu-Yin Culture and Arts

Taiwan Haohao Association (Hunter School)

Dongbuqing (traditional Bunun chant with contemporary instruments)

Amis Kakeng Musical Group (music and dance with Amis tribes’ indigenous musical instruments)

Kasavakan “Apuy” Makers (music and dance from the Pinuyumayan Peoples of the Kasavakan Community)

Mita Idea Co., LtdAmis(National Museum of Prehistory Artist: music, culture and creativity)

Lihan Workshop Fashion show (Found by Indigenous) (traditional Atayal textiles and craftsmanship)
Featured Workshop Leaders:

O.K.A.F. Craft: Demonstrations of Taiwanese rattan crafting and weaving.

Sawtoy Saytay: The leader of Amis Kakeng Musical Group hosts a workshop focused on making flutes, whistles, and bows with materials found in nature.

Hsisiler Liwaerjao: This Paiwan artist, craftsman and hunter from the Paridrayan community in Pingtung County, Taiwan, will lead a totem engraving rubbing workshop with a theme of commemorating those who lost their lives in the Maui fire incident in 2023.

Lin Ching-Che: A ceramics artist who brings the life, culture and beauty of the Paiwan peoples into the creation and practice of contemporary life with practical utensils.

Orange Moon Cultural Studio: Learn about the ancient cultural significance and patterns of traditional glass beads as embellishment. 

Sung Hai-hua (Cudjuy Patjidres) (National Museum of Prehistory Artist): The only traditional hand-tap tattoo artist in Taiwan will display traditional generational tattoo patterns. 

Ata Culture Studio (Paiwan) (National Museum of Prehistory Artist): This group of indigenous women  will teach participants how “peacock” glass beads are made, with various and rich patterns, and the stories of each pattern. 

Syaman Misarkoa (Yami) (National Museum of Prehistory Artist): This Indigenous Tao Peoples' vessel (tatara) boatmaker will conduct small wooden sculpture workshops, accompanied by stories of Yami mythology.

Mita Idea Co., Ltd (Amis (National Museum of Prehistory Artist): Members of this music company will show participants how to cross-stitch on the betel nut tree leaf, and discuss the history and development of mulberry paper (tapa cloth tree) in ‘Etolan Village. 

For more information on this exhibition and other upcoming events and exhibitions at Downtown Art Center, visit

About the Downtown Art Center (DAC):

Located in the Chinatown Gateway Plaza building at 1041 Nuʻuanu Ave., Second Floor, the nonprofit Downtown Art Center is an evolving gallery and workshop space for Oʻahu's arts scene. DAC strives to become a thriving center for the arts by providing display space for local artists and art organizations, workshop classrooms, performances, and more. Support DAC and help it grow at!

Parking for DAC is located at nearby municipal parking lots (onsite at Chinatown Gateway Plaza, parking entrance off Bethel Street) or at Mark's Garage (entrance at 22 S. Pauahi St.). DAC is easily accessible by public transit as well; get directions, routes and timetables at

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  • Downtown Art Center, Honolulu Hawaii
    Downtown Art Center (DAC) is an evolving gallery and workshop space for Oahu's arts scene. DAC strives to become a thriving center for the arts by providing display space for local artists and art organizations, workshop classrooms, performances, and more.
    1041 B Nuuanu, Honolulu, HI (View Map)
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