MICHAEL CONNOLLY at WAIKIKI PARC GALLERY
April 6 – June 2, 2017
Public Reception: Thursday, April 6, 2017 / 6-8pm
Michael Connolly’s sculptures are highlighted as part of an expanded arts partnership of the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa (UHM), the Halekulani and its sister hotel, the Waikiki Parc.
Michael Connolly is a Hawai‘i-based artist whose work is inspired by volcanic activity, hot rod flames, and graphic novels. Connolly captures three types of lava—pāhoehoe, ‘a‘ā, and pillow lava. Pāhoehoe is smooth and dense, and forms large, flat areas with smooth bumps. ‘A‘ā is characterized by individual rocks that are rough, porous, jagged, and sharp. Lava exposed to pressure and temperature of the ocean results in pillow-like forms. In his youth, Connolly collected Hot Wheels cars and always favored those painted with hot rod flames; this motif recurs in his work today.
Currently enrolled in the BFA program at Department of Art + Art History, UHM, Connolly has attended ceramic workshops locally and abroad that exposed him to many talented artists, new ideas, and techniques. Much of Connolly’s early ceramic experience was obtained during his service as a studio technician at Leeward Community College where he received the Outstanding Student Employee award. Recently, Connolly’s work and efforts were recognized by the UHM Department of Art + Art History faculty and he received the Ceramic Faculty Book award, 2016.
Connolly states, “I play with traditional and contemporary ceramic art practices in the hope of blurring the line between utilitarian function and sculptural capability. Inspiration from molten lava and flames brings movement to customary ceramic forms that are usually seen as stationary. Layering, curving, carving, curling, churning, wavering and amalgamation with contrasting colors are counterbalanced to create movement and temperature.”
Recently Connolly’s work was included in Landscape + Lava, a two-person exhibition at the Pacific Guardian Center, Honolulu, 2017, and VISION: 2016 Bachelor of Fine Arts Exhibition, The Art Gallery, UHM.
Guitarist Christopher Hopper will provide music at the opening reception in this series of up-and-coming young artists’ exhibitions at the Waikiki Parc. Hopper studied guitar with Nā Hōkū Hanohano Awards finalist Ian O’Sullivan and ukulele under Dr. Byron Yasui. In 2016, he received a Bachelor of Music degree in performance from the Department of Music, UHM. He has also studied with guitar virtuosos Carlos Barbosa Lima, and the Brazilian Guitar Duo’s Douglas Lora and João Luiz. The recipient of a full scholarship in 2014, Hopper attended Benjamin Verdery’s master class where he studied with Verdery, professor of guitar from Yale University, and Grammy Award-winning guitarist John Dearman from the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet (LAGQ). In 2015 Hopper was invited again to attend the master class, which featured former LAGQ member and founder Andrew York. An occasional performer at Hy’s Steakhouse, Hopper teaches guitar and ukulele to 20 students each week.
SPONSORS: University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa’s Department of Art + Art History, College of Arts + Humanities, and Waikiki Parc Hotel – Hospitality Sponsor for the Arts at UH Mānoa
ADDRESS, HOURS + ADMISSION
Parc Promenade Gallery, Waikiki Parc Hotel Lobby
2233 Helumoa Road, Honolulu
Daily hotel hours / Free admission
Complimentary parking with hotel validation
Fire and Lava 2, 2016
ceramic, high fire
13”H x 10.5” W x 10.5” D
Courtesy of the artist