Monday, March 5, 2012

Art at the Capitol 2012

Rep. Mark Nakashima with artists Ruthadell Anderson and Reiko Brandon
Friday, March 2, 2012, was the 4th annual "Art at the Capitol." Hawai'i is the first state in the nation to mandate that one percent of the budget for a new state building goes to art. Art at the Capitol is a way to allow citizens to view their collection. This year's edition was the largest yet, with fifty-two offices in the House and the Senate (including the Public Access Room), the Offices of the Governor and the Lieutenant Governor, and thirty artists participating.

The artists wore white leis and were on hand to explain their works to the public
Musical entertainment was provided by three quartets: the Hawaii Youth Symphony Quartet and Punahou School's Saburo Watanabe Quartet and Mesrobian Memorial String Quartet.

James Ha, Jennifer Ha, Julie Kuo, and Hee Won Lee filling the 3rd floor with beautiful music
Art at the Capitol is a wonderful opportunity for people to visit the Capitol, interact with lawmakers, and view more than 460 works of art from the State's Art in Public Places Collection. Having the artists present allowed the public to gain insight into the story behind each work of art. 

Artists explained their works to attendees
Rep. Scott Nishimoto showing his collection to visitors
This year was the debut of the FIN(e) Art competition. The House Committee on Finance (FIN) works long hours, often staying at the Capitol well past midnight. Rep. Isaac Choy came up with the contest as a way to help committee members keep their sanity and further involve lawmakers with Art at the Capitol. Ten members of the committee submitted entries to the contest, where they created their best interpretation of Finance Chair, Rep. Marcus Oshiro.

Finance Committee members showing their artistic ability
With an estimated 600 attendees flocking to the Capitol, the event had a great turnout, and a lot of fun was had by all. More photos from the event may be viewed on Art at the Capitol's Facebook page. Be sure to come be a part of next year's Art at the Capitol!

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