Protiva show opens Saturday at Ship Store Galleries in Waipouli

The art of award-winning marine seascape artist, Michael Protiva, is featured this month at Ship Store Galleries in the Coconut Marketplace in Waipouli, with a champagne reception to kick off the exhibition from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday.

This is the last major show at the galleries until the summer, owners said in a press release.

The artist will present a new group of watercolors, oils and acrylics, some of which are painted on charts of the Hawaiian Islands.

The exhibition is titled “Charting Paradise,” which refers to the artist’s innovative technique of painting scenes of Kaua’i on navigational marine charts.

“I search maritime archives for interesting charts of Kaua’i and the Hawaiian Islands, and then print the charts on artist canvas,” Protiva explained.

“Then I do an acrylic painting on the surface of the chart. To preserve and protect the art, I seal the entire surface with a coat of varnish,” Protiva said.

Protiva also has reproduced many of his scenes as limitededition giclee prints, which are sold exclusively in Hawai’i at Ship Store Galleries.

“The prints are very affordable, and we offer them in several different sizes,” said gallery owner Carol von Wiegen.

The collection of chart paintings and prints includes views of Kilauea Lighthouse at Kilauea Point National Wildlife Refuge, Maha’ulepu, the Hokule’a in Hanalei Bay, and many other familiar island subjects.

“I first started the chart paintings in New England, which is my second-favorite place to paint after Kaua’i,” said Protiva.

He thinks the island lends itself to almost any artistic endeavor due to its diverse natural beauty.

“I have been painting Kaua’i since the early ’80s, and I still cannot imagine a more inspiring place,” states Protiva.

In addition to Protiva’s “chart” paintings, he also paints traditional watercolor and oil works on paper and canvas.

His seafaring heritage goes back a long way. Protiva is a direct descendent of John Howland, who came to colonial America aboard the Mayflower.

Protiva grew up in Venezuela, and later moved to California, where he set up an art studio in Sausalito. Protiva decided to depart California in the mid-’90s, and now divides his time between New England and Hawai’i.

For information about Saturday’s artist’s reception for Protiva at Ship Store Galleries, call the gallery’s main office at 822-4999.

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