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Artist David Kuraoka prepares for a brand new ceramics center in Līhuʻe

Noe Tanigawa
Noe Tanigawa
David Kuraoka

Internationally recognized ceramic artist David Kuraoka works out of his studio in Haʻena on Kauaʻi these days. He says they're getting used to the tourists again on the Garden Isle.

He's going ahead with equipment for an incredible project coming to Līhuʻe — an art center in the former Kress building on Rice Street.

"It's happening actually. I very recently put an order in to Laguna Clay Company for the equipment. It's going to be very well equipped with lots of electric kilns, gas kilns, beautiful wheels, the whole studio set-up," he said. "I even got a forklift because I know I'm not picking anything up."

Kuraoka said there will be 12 wheels, four electric kilns and one large gas kiln.

In addition to the ceramic studio, there will be an even larger printmaking studio. Artist, gallery owner Bruna Stude is organizing the print studio.

Meanwhile, Kuraoka said the Kress building is coming along well.

"But they're waiting for permits," he said. "So it's going to all be done right in the end. I think it's going to be a good deal for Kauaʻi and then it'll be here for future generations."

Developer Mark Gabbay, currently in California, says he'll be in the islands over the holidays to give a full update on the project.

This interview aired on The Aloha Friday Conversation on Oct. 29, 2021.

Noe Tanigawa covered art, culture and ideas for two decades at Hawaiʻi Public Radio.
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