Puʻuhonua Society is pleased to announce the theme and curators of the fifth annual CONTACT exhibition, happening at the Honolulu Museum of Art and in spaces around Waikīkī in April 2018.

The CONTACT ZONE is an anthropological concept coined by Mary Louise Pratt and defined as "a social space where cultures meet, clash, and grapple with each other, often in contexts of highly asymmetrical relations of power, such as colonialism, slavery, or their aftermaths as they are lived out in many part of the world today." Artists are encouraged to explore the cultural juxtapositions, entanglements, similarities and learning opportunities that are unique to Hawai‘i, its history, and its people.


Keola Naka'ahiki Rapozo and Michael Rooks have been selected as this year's curatorial team for CONTACT 2018. Rapozo is the creative director and co-founder of the iconic Hawaiian streetwear brand FITTED. Rooks serves as the Wieland Family Curator of Modern and Contemporary art at the High Museum and has previously held curatorial positions at The Contemporary Museum and the Honolulu Academy of Arts, before the institutions merged to become the Honolulu Museum of Art. Rapozo and Rooks will work together to curate and jury the multisite project. 


As the epicenter of tourism in Hawaii today, Waikīkī continues to be a natural contact zone on O‘ahu. From the landing of Kamehameha and his foreign army to invade O‘ahu, to the boatloads of tourists on Matson’s Lurline at the turn of the century, Waikīkī is both a historic and a present contact zone.

In addition to including installations on the grounds of the Honolulu Museum of Art School, CONTACT organizers are working to secure public and private spaces in around Waikīkī to cite contemporary art projects. If artists are interested in proposing projects, please contact


As in years past, there are two phases to the exhibition development - Call for Proposals and Jury Day. During the Call for Proposals phase, curators will work with selected artists to develop and realize projects after receiving and reviewing initial proposals. On Jury Day, Hawaiʻi-based artists are invited to bring completed work that reflects their interpretation of the theme, Contact Zone, for jurying and consideration for inclusion in the exhibition. Please stay tuned for dates and specific requirements.

Mahalo for your patience! If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to get in contact with us.