Photography: Aaron Yoshino
Local artist Shar Tuiasoa paints an indoor mural at the new dispensary in ‘Aiea for Noa Botanicals, a medical cannabis company.
Tuiasoa’s mural tells the story of migration and the different ways in which plants, resources and people have migrated throughout Polynesia.
“When Noa Botanicals approached me, they wanted an image that wasn’t just a typical cannabis leaf,” says Tuiasoa. “They wanted something that tied into agriculture in Hawai‘i, and that was the idea that I went with.”
She used interior house paint for the 16-by-8-foot mural and curated her palette from colors used in Noa Botanical’s new packaging, logo and website.
“In Hawai‘i’s history there have been families who have cultivated their own (cannabis) strains over the course of generations, so there was all this information that I needed to put together into one image,” says Tuiasoa. “You can see the two wa‘a (canoes) in the background and you have the ‘iwa birds in the skies. That is my nod to travel and migration, and how some of our resources have traveled throughout Polynesia.
“And then of course, again swinging it back to the farmers, a nod to the generational cannabis farmers in Hawai‘i.”
Tuiasoa is the artist behind Punky Aloha Studio, a design and illustration studio based in Kailua, where she was born and raised. She studied fine art at Windward Community College for six years before earning a BFA at California’s Laguna College of Art and Design in illustration and entertainment design.
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Published: September 17, 2020