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  • Nick Black Art

Nick Black Art Location / Contact:
2943 Kalakaua
Honolulu, Hi 96815
Phone: 808-391-6258

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Nick Black has been a part of the art community in Hawaii for more than 20 years. His work captures the heart and allure of the Hawaiian Islands both in the commercial and fine art worlds, initially becoming widely popularized in the Hawaiian lifestyle textiles of the early 80's and 90's. Internationally acclaimed artist and art critic John Charlot tipped his hat to Nick's work in a review of a 1986 show sponsored by Hawaii's East West Center:

"A distinctly Hawaiian t-shirt industry has emergedÉbut that industry displayed little or no interest in good art until Nicholas Black began a career that has so far proved successfully both artistically and commercially. His example should inspire other companies to commission art works from the mainly local artists who do interesting work in the field."

After attending the prestigious Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, Nick went to work as an in-house artist for several of Hawaii's major textile manufacturers of the time. His colorful designs featuring traditional Hawaiian lifestyle motifs like fishing, canoeing, surfing, and scenes from Hawaiian lore were perfect for the booming aloha shirt market of the early to mid 1980's and his unique approach created an entirely new look that leveraged the Hawaiian Style brand into one of the biggest success stories in the history of the Hawaii based surf apparel industry.

Nick continued as a successfully independent commercial artist throughout the late 1980's and early 90's doing commissioned projects for RonJon's, Crazy Shirts, Bishop Museum and others, as well as creating distinctive corporate logos including the Honolulu Marathon.

While acquiring his MFA from the University of Hawaii he produced Waikiki Babylon, a series of intaglio etchings that served as a social commentary of the culturally bankrupt Waikiki of the mid 1990's. His moody monochromatic prints are almost void of color like black and white photographs evoking nostalgia for innocence lost.

Presently an art teacher with the State of Hawaii, Nick continues to pursue the Kama'aina lifestyle as an artist, educator and family man with his wife Lucy and their beautiful daughter Emily. His portfolio continues to grow as he explores and creates new ways to blend art and Hawaiian culture. In all of his projects, the ideas reflect the artist's mission: to create compelling and authentic art that celebrates the unique beauty of Hawaiian nature, people and cultural heritage.
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