Maui Arts & Entertainment

Maui Arts & Cultural Center presents Sense of Place / Place of Sense

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  • Artwork by Kapua Robinson, Pomaika’i Elementary School 4th Grade. PC: Courtesy Maui Arts & Cultural Center
  • On the Tow to Lahaina. PC: Brendan George Ko, courtesy Maui Arts & Cultural Center
  • Kahului Fairgrounds (7.17.1987) PC: Matthew Thayer via Maui Arts & Cultural Center
  • Conservation At Work. PC: Zach Pezzillo via Maui Arts & Cultural Center

Maui Arts & Cultural Center presents Sense of Place / Place of Sense, an exhibition exploring the multi-faceted meaning of community at a critical moment of change for Maui by looking at who we are in the present time and the promise we hold for the future. The exhibit opens to the public Tuesday, Jan. 23 and the gallery is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is free.

This project is a culmination of numerous partnerships and discussions that unfolded in the latter half of 2023, a process intended to create a meaningful and experiential exhibition that would hold space for community.

Gallery Director Jonathan Clark said, “In the aftermath of the devastating events of August 2023, we initiated numerous conversations with community knowledge-bearers and artists to ask what the community would need moving forward, and to think of ways that we could engage the arts to provide an experience that would feel authentic and resonate. It became clear that the focus of this exhibit needed to be about the community, about the people of Maui whose stories and family histories make this place so unique.”

The gallery space will offer built environments with activated themes of history, water, land, spirituality, and people. Partnering organizations for components of the project include the University of Hawai‘i Center for Oral History, Maui Historical Society, and Lahaina Restoration Foundation.


The installation includes photography by Bob Bangerter, Masako Cordray, Ai Iwane, Brendan George Ko, Zach Pezzillo and Matthew Thayer; video installation by Andy Behrle; prints by Abigail Romanchak; written ʻōlelo noʻeau by Pūlama Collier; mural painting by Cory Kamehanaokalā Holt Taum; and artwork by students from Pōmaikaʻi Elementary School and Baldwin High School. The experiences offered throughout the exhibition will tap into the= potential for art to bring about awareness, dialogue, and connection, encouraging a deeper level of engagement with Maui and the people who have made this island home.

Interactive stations can be found integrated throughout the space, where visitors can contribute their voice to the collective experience. One of these stations will take shape as a recording booth for community members to share their own oral histories of Maui. The experience has been developed in consultation with the University of Hawai‘i Center for Oral History and will include an adjacent listening space where people can hear or read a selection of the stories collected over the course of the exhibit’s run.

Open Call for Photographs: Maui through Time

Another collaborative element for direct community involvement will be a photo wall installation that evolves through an open call for personal photographs. MACC invites Maui island residents to contribute photographs that encapsulate their personal relationships to Maui through family histories, local gatherings, and places of special meaning. The recommended deadline for submissions is Jan. 19, 2024, but photos will continue to be accepted on a rolling basis throughout January and February.


Community members can access information on how to submit images via the exhibit page on the MACC website at Sense Of Place – Place Of Sense.

Schaefer International Gallery is open from Tuesday – Saturday, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., and also before select Castle Theater shows. Admission is free.

This exhibition is presented by Maui Arts & Cultural Center and funded by a grant from the Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities, through support from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Additional funding provided by County of Maui – Office of Economic Development.

FREE Public Events

Observe & Play Family Day
Saturday, Feb. 10; 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.


Families are invited to visit the gallery and participate in activities that expand on the themes of community in the exhibit, including creating artwork to take home. No pre-registration required.

Our Island Ecosystems
Saturday, Feb. 24; 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.

This event welcomes learners of all ages to explore the fascinating ecosystems that make our islands so unique. Botanical and conservation experts will lead presentations and hands-on interactive stations that encourage thoughtful relationships with the natural resources and environments of Maui.

Participants include Ethan Romanchak of Maui Native Nursery who will be bringing in native plant saplings and seeds for visitors to replant and sort. Zach Pezzillo, one of the photographers in the exhibit, will be in the gallery discussing his conservation work and photographic process. Added participants will be posted on the MACC website as they are confirmed.


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