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Entertainment // Art & Stage
Rasa Fournier

The Warmth, the Land, the People

Their styles are as different as … well, yin and yang says it well. They’re so opposite, but together perfectly complementary. He paints portraits in large strokes with bold, sun-saturated textures, mostly portraying ladies, often topless. She has a wispy, delicate stroke, displaying sweeping landscapes in soft tones. He is James Goss and she Rosemary Bak, and their oil paintings are the latest exhibition spicing up the ambience at Che Pasta.

“Jim works a lot in the shadows; he has a mastery of light and dark,” says Che Pasta general manager Pedro Generalao. “Rosemary also has a very good approach to light and dark. (Her work is) very subtle, it’s almost like traditional Chinese landscapes.”

Their brushes both love Hawaii.

Hers favor a pineapple field with a giant juicy specimen in the foreground, a sailboat off Diamond Head, green fields giving way to a shoreline studded with two giant volcanic craters, a rainbow over a mist-covered valley, tide pools at the foot of a promontory imbedded with a lighthouse. His adores women – local women with hibiscus or plumeria in their ears, thick flowing hair, full lips, nose and cheeks, and leis highlighting their supple breasts. He pays homage to his subjects’ mixture of ethnicities with names like “Haole, Chinese, Japanese, Hawaiian” or “Hawaiian, Chinese, Korean, With Wiliwili Seed Lei.” You can almost feel the sun’s golden light warming their tan skin. No one looking at the portraits would think “Disney,” which is where Goss worked as an animator for 10 years, including on The Lion King and the Hunchback of Notre Dame. Perhaps that experience is what helps make his work so crisp, inviting and alive.

“I assist owner Marc Cohen in soliciting artists,” notes Generalao, “and it was his friend Edgy Lee who recommended these two artists. Their work is full of life, robust. It’s a match made in paradise.”

Nicole Naone is slender and feminine, a model since adolescence. She’s also tough, wielding a saw and assortment of heavy electric tools to complete her first solo exhibit, MASS, at The Human Imagination (1154 Nuuanu Ave.) Her sculptures in bronze, foam and plaster, and her illustrations hint at the voluptuous female form. They suggest curving hips, thighs, breasts. In a wry piece, “Letter to My Brother,” she uses a series of torso sketches as her typeface. Is it an intro to the birds and the bees? Does the name suggest something darker? Is it just cute and playful?

“I’m happy with any emotion people get from my work as long as they feel something,” says Naone. “I speak Hawaiian, Eng-lish and Korean, but I can never quite communicate successfully with words, so art is my language. With ‘Letter to My Brother,’ I use art as a communicative tool, literally.

“This show was inspired by who I am, who I’m not and who I’m hoping to become. All the masses featured in the show were created to be strong and delicate, hard while being soft, light while being heavy, sensual without being sexual, fertile, grounded and self-aware.

“As a model, I am used to being the product and the object. One thing I particularly wanted with the pieces was to show that the woman can be the object without objectifying her. All of my previous works are very crowded, intricate and full of secrets. With this show, I wanted to challenge myself and see if I could make things that weren’t completely secret-free, but sort of hiding in plain sight.”

The shapes, fleshy, melting, being born, tease the viewer from the walls and counters of the shop through Sept. 6.

REFLECTIONS IN OIL

When: During restaurant hours through Sept. 29
Where: Cafe Che Pasta (1001 Bishop St. #108)
Cost: Free viewing
More Info: 524-0004


ALSO SHOWING
Nicole Naone is slender and feminine, a model since adolescence. She’s also tough, wielding a saw and assortment of heavy electric tools to complete her first solo exhibit, MASS, at The Human Imagination (1154 Nuuanu Ave.) Her sculptures in bronze, foam and plaster, and her illustrations hint at the voluptuous female form. They suggest curving hips, thighs, breasts. In a wry piece, “Letter to My Brother,” she uses a series of torso sketches as her typeface. Is it an intro to the birds and the bees? Does the name suggest something darker? Is it just cute and playful?

“I’m happy with any emotion people get from my work as long as they feel something,” says Naone. “I speak Hawaiian, English and Korean, but I can never quite communicate successfully with words, so art is my language. With ‘Letter to My Brother,’ I use art as a communicative tool, literally.

“This show was inspired by who I am, who I’m not and who I’m hoping to become. All the masses featured in the show were created to be strong and delicate, hard while being soft, light while being heavy, sensual without being sexual, fertile, grounded and self-aware.

“As a model, I am used to being the product and the object. One thing I particularly wanted with the pieces was to show that the woman can be the object without objectifying her. All of my previous works are very crowded, intricate and full of secrets. With this show, I wanted to challenge myself and see if I could make things that weren’t completely secret-free, but sort of hiding in plain sight.”

The shapes, fleshy, melting, being born, tease the viewer from the walls and counters of the shop through Sept. 6.

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