Ship Store Galleries unveiling Massey work

One of America’s leading marine-historical artists, Raymond A. Massey, returns to Kaua’i this month for his annual exhibition at Ship Store Galleries.

A reception for the artist is scheduled at the gallery tomorrow from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. The public is invited.

The show will run through April 28.

“Exploring Old Hawai‘i” — the theme for Massey’s 2007 exhibition, encompasses a 50-year period in Hawai‘i’s history, from 1790 to 1840.

This colorful, tumultuous era is the inspiration for a series of works that collectively transport the viewer to a bygone age — unlocking historic moments otherwise lost in time.

According to Fred von Wiegen, co-owner of Ship Store Galleries, Massey paints one major work to highlight each year’s annual exhibition. “Ray completed this year’s featured work less than two weeks before the scheduled opening of the show.

The painting depicts the American ship, “Lelia Byrd” being towed into Honolulu Harbor in the summer of 1805.

The vessel was ultimately purchased by King Kamehameha who used it as the flagship of his royal navy.

The painting is part of a series by Massey that chronicles the changing face of the Honolulu waterfront from 1790 through the mid-1800’s,” von Wiegen explained.

Ship Store Galleries has hosted Massey’s annual show for the past 17 years, according to von Wiegen. “Our admiration for Ray Massey is due in large part to his remarkable ability to recreate important events in maritime history that are both aesthetically appealing and painstakingly authentic. We are also indebted to the artist for his loyalty and support to the gallery and its many patrons to whom the names, Massey and Ship Store are virtually synonymous.”

For more information about the exhibit, and to attend a special media presentation by the artist, contact Ship Store Galleries at 822-4999.

The gallery, which is located at the Coconut Marketplace in Kapa‘a, is open Monday to Saturday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

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