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A Maui artist’s last look at Puunene

By Staff | Mar 24, 2016

Ronaldo Macedo’s “So What’s Next?” will spark the memories of generations of Maui residents. The painting won the Maui Prime sponsor award this year.

LAHAINA – During the 2016 Maui Plein Air Painting Invitational (MPAPI) in February, event co-founder Ronaldo Macedo captured a scene that portrays Puunene Sugar Mill as five generations of Maui residents have known it.

The close of operations at Alexander & Baldwin’s facility spurred Macedo to secure permission for 13 top plein air artists to paint the scene one last time – the mill and trucks with the proud smokestack reaching into an indigo sky; memories preserved forever.

Maui Arts League is dedicated to bringing fine art events and programs to Maui. Its recent event was a big success by all measurements: 25 artists sold 95 paintings, generating gross sales of over $143,000.

Weeklong attendance exceeded 2,000, with more Mainland visitors than previous years. This high-caliber art event now draws nationally famous artists who are honored to be invited.

Maui Arts League President Lois Reiswig said, “Our event is helping West Maui become an art destination.” Each artwork created during the event was a “slice of Maui life,” she added.

James McGrew from Oregon perfectly experienced the sky-land-sea dynamics in “Honolua Bay Shimmer,” which Clifford Nae‘ole selected for the Honor Hawaii, Honor Maui Award, and David Hoffman selected for the Montage Kapalua Bay sponsor award.

Paintings were done outdoors, on location, and completed in a few short hours to depict movement, weather and time of day – aspects that tickle senses and emotions. Attendees loved getting in close to watch artists at work and later view their completed artwork.

The large oil painting “Lahaina Dusk” by Jason Sacran of Arizona was honored as “Best in Show 2016” at the Maui Plein Air Painting Invitational. A Lahaina collector purchased the artwork.