Ka Leo o Nā Koa

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  • Tera PalekaMay 24, 2014 at 11:33 am

    I am the mother of ‘Ainoa Shaw, and I just so happened to stumble upon this conversation today. I would like to say that when I found out about my sons and Sarah’s work being painted over I was very sad. When I spoke to my son who is on the mainland for collage about this he said he knew but nobody called to ask his permission and that he in fact spoke with Sarah about it and she said the same thing. Now, I don’t know if he might have been called after the fact but I do know he wasn’t asked prior. I write this not to start trouble. I am simply sad that Preston, Sarah, my sons hard work is gone as if it “wasn’t good enough”.

    I was the PTSO Rep all 4 years of my son’s class of 2010. I can say first hand that KSM had what seemed like a “disconnect” when it came to school spirit. Everything seemed to be so “buttoned up” and hyper-critical when it came to being loud and proud with school spirit. As if nobody wanted to spill their tea cups at a football game..
    Of course Kamehameha Schools in general was going through the litigation regarding non-Hawaiian acceptance to the school and this did place a cloud on all campus’s but for the most part Maui Campus really couldn’t seem to shake the paranoid or staunchly attitude about how to be a Warrior. I’m sure there will be those who disagree with me and have the opposite opinion but let me tell you as PTSO Rep the kids and their parents always came to me and my cohort Lei Richmond asking us to plead with administration for change. I will say that I heard things have gotten better and that is all I have ever wanted. This is not a matter of being right or wrong. This is a matter of our kids high school experience with lasting memories. It hurts to see that my son’s mural is no longer there, no longer a memory.

    ‘Ainoa’s 8 year old little brother Maui (now 14) watched him paint in the hot sun over the summer and Maui always pointed with pride to his big brothers mural when we walked the campus for football, Ho’olaule’a, summer/spring programs and other various events is saddest of all as the mural is no longer available for his memories & enjoyment. I understand things change and in no way did I expect the mural to last forever, but to have the murals pained over by another one with-in a few years shows that it was a matter of someone’s opinion of “what art is” or what makes a good mural “good enough” for KSM… The truth is that no one contacted my son or Sarah until after the deed was done. The truth is that my son is going to kill me for posting this but I don’t care. Everyone knows that I will speak my mind and truth. I am not trying to offend anyone or speak ill of the school. I am so grateful that my sons have been afforded the opportunity to attend Kamehameha Schools Maui. The education and history are hands down the best in the nation! I love everything about Kamehameha Schools accept for the things I mentioned above. I admire all who have gone before and will come after in graduating from Kamehameha Schools. Please accept my apologies in advance if I offended anyone as that is not my intention. I am simply sharing my experience and hope that a lesson was learned as well as seeing that more collaborative communication needs to happen before having someone’s hard work, memories & pride get “white washed” away like it did in Preston’s, Sarah’s & ‘Ainoa’s case.
    Tera L.H. Paleka

  • VeronicaOct 15, 2012 at 10:58 am

    First off, I would like to thank the journalist for telling the stories of our students and their accomplishments. As new pieces inhabit in our spaces, it’s always nice to be well informed on such nuances.

    Though as a writer for my college’s newsletter, it is my job as a journalist to use an objective voice as we act as a mere medium for conveying the stories of others. I’ve always felt pretty peculiar in the way journalists develop a story with inconsistent information & orientation.

    The fact that the more controversial portion of Nakanelua’s project was emphasized rather than the cultural continuity and awareness the mural piece invokes was rather troubling. As a former Kamehameha Maui student I always believed that our school, especially Maui, operated as an ‘ohana with a collective consciousness in mind. That our faculty, staff, kumu, and students applaud the accomplishments of all students, especially those of our seniors. It seems that many on campus are not even on the same page, as Mr. Mossman states above that no one was kept abreast of the actual function and purpose of the wall itself.

    Further, to address the discrepancies mentioned by the 1st commenter, the journalist should have mentioned that the artist “got permission” from the artists to paint over it in the beginning of the written piece to avoid jaded perspectives. It was as though the journalist merely glossed over that detail as if it were some insignificant fact. To reinforce the author’s objective voice, maybe the journalist could have interviewed the alumni artists or focused the article on the discussions between Nakanelua and the other artists. So with all due respect, the “common sense” that would constitute this notion of “respect” was never an issue here as Nakanelua’s work was approved on the administrative, scholastic, and peer level.

    Though the article was well written, it seems to lack a couple of dimensions and has consequently taken away from the deeper message, which is nation building. Our haumana are the way, and if we continue to stomp all over the kupu that have been planted, the progress we as kanaka maoli have made in a post-colonial society will be hindered–and more often then not, such impediments are unfortunately committed by our very own.

    I have a deep appreciation for critical thinking and dialogue, especially amongst our own people because it goes to show that we are not a “sleeping people”, we are very much so alive and well. Ultimately, I’m truly grateful for this article because it has created a space for critical engagement and epistemological exchange.

    Me ke aloha pu

  • Kealii MossmanAug 21, 2012 at 1:32 pm

    If the original purpose of the art on the wall was to represent the school and tell the KS Maui Warrior story, then the first two works should have gone through a more robust screening process. The ideas would have been shot down and they would have been able to come up with different designs that conform to the KS Maui Warrior story parameters. And, it would have eliminated the need to paint over the hard work that the first two artists put into their murals. I hope that any subsequent art work is in line with the purpose of the wall. I would hate to see someone paint over Pololu’s work as well.

    One more thing. I don’t think anyone knew that the wall are was intended to tell our KS Maui warrior story. As such, I don’t think anyone would have cared if the order was a little bit off. It will take so much longer to have the whole wall painted now.

    Finally, I think that the original artists should be able to submit designs that satisfy “the story” and paint them or have someone else paint it onto the wall. Their original work has been erased, but at least they would get a second chance to have their talent and ideas showcased.

  • Kahu PuaAug 16, 2012 at 11:07 pm

    Common sense please….avoid disrespect….bless all three artists……

    there is enough space for all three….

    Please have the original two artists re do another art piece ….

    2006 was a special year for many families. We look forward
    to you artists to paint again, to express your joy in your art / gift from
    Ke Akua+

    The newest art piece must be checked up close. I cannot tell what
    it is in this site. Please, if possible, print it larger on-line for the audience and
    islanders. Mahalo!

    Me Ke Aloha Pumehana, Kahu Pua and Ohana+

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