By Stacy L. Kamehiro
The Arts of Kingship deals a sustained and particular account of Hawaiian public artwork and structure through the reign of David Kalakaua, the nativist and cosmopolitan ruler of the Hawaiian nation from 1874 to 1891. Stacy Kamehiro presents visible and ancient research of Kalakaua’s coronation and regalia, the King Kamehameha Statue, ‘Iolani Palace, and the Hawaiian nationwide Museum, drawing them jointly in a typical old, political, and cultural body. every one articulated Hawaiian nationwide identities and navigated the turbulence of colonialism in designated methods and has continued as a key cultural symbol.
These cultural tasks have been a part of the monarchy’s concerted attempt to advertise a countrywide tradition within the face of colonial pressures, inner political divisions, and declining social stipulations for local Hawaiians, which, together, posed critical threats to the survival of the country. The Kalakaua management recommended pictures that boosted diplomacy and appeased overseas agitators within the country whereas addressing indigenous political cleavages. Kamehiro translates the photographs, areas, and associations as articulations of the advanced cultural entanglements and artistic engagement with overseas groups that take place with lengthy colonial touch. Nineteenth-century Hawaiian sovereigns celebrated local culture, historical past, and modernity through intertwining indigenous conceptions of greater mainly management with the apparati and emblems of Asian, American, and ecu rule. The ensuing symbolic kinds converse to cultural intersections and ancient methods, claims approximately area of expertise and commonality, and the ability of items, associations, and public reveal to create that means and let motion.
The Arts of Kingship pursues questions in regards to the nature of cultural alternate, how precolonial visible tradition engaged and formed colonial contexts, and the way colonial paintings informs postcolonial visualities and identities. it is going to be welcomed by way of readers with a basic and scholarly curiosity in Hawaiian background and paintings. because it contributes to discussions approximately colonial cultures, nationalism, and globalization, this interdisciplinary paintings will entice artwork and architectural historians in addition to these learning Pacific background, cultural and museum stories, and anthropology.
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Extra resources for The Arts of Kingship: Hawaiian Art and National Culture of the Kalakaua Era
For Kalākaua, the glorification of the chiefly hierarchy was key to maintaining independence and encouraging Native trust in his authority. Gibson’s speech presented to the Legislative Assembly in defense of the coronation reveals some of the primary objectives of the proposal: And shall we, upholders of a monarchy with the example of enlightened monarchical Europe, attach no importance to such a ceremonial? Shall we not, rather—sustained by the declared opinion . . that the monarchy was essential to the best welfare of the Hawaiian people, strengthen the Hawaiian throne by taking measures to provide for a crowning consummation?
Approved this 9th day of August, A. D. 1880. 1 Additional funds were appropriated in the 1882 legislative session. Some writers suggest the proposal for and organization of the coronation were largely influenced by Celso Caesar Moreno, a naturalized American citizen of Italian origin who arrived in Honolulu on 14 November 1879 and who remained there as an active presence for over nine months. Moreno and Kalākaua began their close relationship in 1874, when they met in San Francisco. 3 Rather than recognizing Kalākaua’s contributions to the coronation, many observers credit—or alternatively ascribe blame to—“mischievous” haole pursuing their own agendas and aggrandizement.
18 They recognized the value of the coronation as a constructive and convincing means of validating the king’s right to rule. In October 1882, Kalākaua announced the date of his coronation to be 12 February 1883, the ninth anniversary of his election,19 and the day was declared a national holiday. Related activities occupied nearly two full weeks from the ceremony proper to the Grand The Art of Kingship Lū‘au, a full-dress feast and hula performance on 24 February. 20 It was a full schedule of events designed to leave a lasting impression.
The Arts of Kingship: Hawaiian Art and National Culture of the Kalakaua Era by Stacy L. Kamehiro