News Column

Hawaiian Electric Donation to Honolulu Museum of Art Supports Arts and Science Education

May 22, 2014

HONOLULU, May 22 -- Hawaiian Electric issued the following news release:

Hawaiian Electric has contributed $15,000 to the Honolulu Museum of Art in support of the exhibition Inquiring Finds, which connects science and art, currently on display at the museum's Spalding House location in Makiki Heights. Part of the donation also provides for school groups to tour the exhibit and participate in hands-on learning activities.

"About 45 schools from across Oahu as well as schools from Kauai and Molokai will experience our Inquiring Finds: the science behind the art exhibition this spring semester thanks to the Hawaiian Electric grant," said Bradley Capello, museum educator. The exhibition showcases art pieces - from pottery and photography to lighting and mechanical sculptures - while explaining their origins in science. Inquiring Finds was developed by the museum's education curator Aaron Padilla and a team of teaching artists to serve as both a resource for educators as well as a learning tool for students.

For Andrea Charuk, one of the museums' teaching artists, the concepts in the galleries and the hands-on activities help students to understand the world around them. "Children are visual learners. Art allows self-expression, and also helps with spatial reasoning and problem solving," she said, noting that " learning happens everywhere if we observe and ask questions."

Holomua Elementary School in Ewa Beach was one of the schools to send about 200 students in the 5th grade to Spalding House. For teacher Erin Imamura, exhibitions like Inquiring Finds are invaluable resources. "The exhibition adds interest to our existing curriculum and my students are able to make the connection between art and other subjects like science," she said. "The other benefit of going on the school tour is the hands-on activities. The supplies for the make-and-take projects are already provided, and my students do better and learn more from these experiments," Imamura added.

"I saw cool things that I've never seen before and had a great time!" said an excited Anahi Guerrero, 7, of Mauka Lani Elementary in Makakilo. "The view from here is nice and this is the coolest place," echoed fellow student Jeina Bright, 9. "I also learned that certain metals are used to make the pottery different colors and how pottery was made in the olden days." For Elijah Semeatu, 9, understanding the science behind photography held its own fascination. "I want to come back and bring my whole football team to see the dark box and upside down image," he exclaimed.

Inquiring Finds runs through July 6, 2014 at Honolulu Museum of Art Spalding House. Teachers interested in a school group tour may call Jenny Engle, teacher liaison, at 532-8771 to reserve space. For more information about Inquiring Finds or to contribute to the museum, visit

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Source: Targeted News Service