Aloha Kai: Love for the Ocean

Aloha Kai: Love for the Ocean
April 5 – May 17, 2024 
Honolulu Hale

Opening event: Friday, April 5, 4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

In celebration of Earth Day 2024 the Mayor’s Office of Culture and the Arts announces a new exhibit titled Aloha Kai: Love for the Ocean, on display at Honolulu Hale from April 5 to May 17. The exhibition presents a multi-media and participatory installation created by Jane Chang Mi inspired by the work of Nā Kama Kai that considers the potential of early childhood and ocean-based curriculum.

The exhibit is grounded in Nā Kama Kai’s philosophy of “Empowering children by connecting keiki to the kai and ʻāina to nurture a deeper sense of aloha and kuleana for the natural environment and themselves.” Na Kama Kai presents “Ocean Clinics” and various keiki-oriented workshops that nurture a deep sense of love for the ocean among our youth, ingraining an understanding of their kuleana to water safety and environmental awareness. 

Jane Chang Mi extends this philosophy into a multimedia installation, transforming the Honolulu Hale courtyard into an installation inspired by a multi-sensory classroom with soft play sculptures, prints, banners, and an interactive ‘ōlelo-inspired installation. The exhibit features Mi’s interdisciplinary research about various efforts across Oceania and Aloha Aina movements that show deep care for the ocean.  Mi’s display merges her role as an artist and ocean engineer, reflecting her commitment as a mother to instill in her child respect and care for the ocean. Mi will partner with Honolulu Community Action Program, Inc. to provide visits to experience the exhibition at Honolulu Hale. 

This exhibit is presented in conjunction with Earth Day, held on April 20th, which is the largest civic observance in the world to demonstrate support for environmental protection efforts.

About Nā Kama Kai:

Nā Kama Kai, which means “children of the sea,” empowers children by connecting our keiki to the kai and ʻāina to nurture a deeper sense of aloha and kuleana for the natural environment and themselves. Founded in 2008 by pro-surfer Duane DeSoto, who understood the gift that had been given to him from the day he was born down at Mākaha beach and he wanted to recreate that for the communities of Oʻahu. He aimed to create a safe environment for children around Hawaiʻi and the world to experience the ocean and learn about it

About Jane Chang Mi: 

As an artist and ocean engineer, Jane Chang Mi assesses the post-colonial ocean environment through interdisciplinary research. She examines the narratives associated with the underwater landscape, considering the past, present, and future. Mi most often focuses on the occupation and militarization of the Pacific Ocean by the United States. Specifically, her practice is centered around the topics of militourism—the creation and protection of tourist economies by military or paramilitary forces—and scientific colonization. This interest emerges from her background as an ocean engineer, a field that is inextricably linked to the American military complex.

Honolulu Hale is open Monday through Friday 7:45 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.