Kokua Line

By Gregg K. Kakesako

Wednesday, October 2, 1996


Center's $100,000 statue
symbolizes isle harmony

QUESTION: How much did the monument cost that sits in the front of the Pearl City Cultural Center? It's located near the end of Waimano Home Road. It's large and black with a big hole in the middle. I don't know what it is.

ANSWER: It's been described as a hybrid between Darth Vader and the Phantom of the Opera. The black terrazzo sculpture by University of Hawaii art professor Mamoru Sato is based on the traditional Hawaiian cape.

According to the state, the sculpture, titled "Hoolaulima," suggests "both strength and protection." The top surfaces represent the distant mountain ranges while the "two sections - punctuated by a circular opening - symbolize the multicultural community, working together toward the future."

The statue cost $100,000 and should be dedicated within the next few months, said Ron Yamakawa, art in public places manager for the State Foundation on Culture and the Arts.

Yamakawa said an advisory committee consisting of the principal of Pearl City High School, faculty, staff, students and community members screened the prospective choices. The cultural center is administered by the high school. Sato was one of five finalists, and his design was accepted in April 1995.

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