Hawai'i conservation alliance

Conservation Through Art

Art provides one of the most effective ways to connect people to conservation. The Hawai‘i Conservation Conference presents an annual “Conservation Through Art” exhibition that allows participants the opportunity to share artists’ awareness of and appreciation for Hawai‘i’s natural environment.

At the ARTS at Marks Garage


For the first time, the Conservation through Art exhibit expands beyond the confines of the convention center into the streets of downtown Honolulu to The ARTS at Marks Garage. 


Splendor: Portraits of the Natural World

Splendor: Portraits of the Natural World features painter and park ranger Melissa Chimera’s large-format paintings of rare plants and animals of the State Natural Area Reserve System. They include species such as po‘ouli—one of the rarest birds in the world—last seen in Maui’s Hanawi forest on Haleakalā mountain. The show will be on display at The ARTS at Marks Garage from July 26 - August 13, 2011.

Artist's Opening Reception*

July 27th, 6-8 pm
The ARTS at Marks Garage
Free and open to the public

Join us for Splendor's opening reception with Melissa Chimera.  Nature writer Adele Ne Jame reads poems inspired by the remote Hawaiian wilderness from her new book The South Wind and from their collaboration Land and Spirit commissioned by the Sharjah 2009 Biennial. Ibrahim Aoude describes Ne Jame's new collection of poetry as a deep expression of exquisite, lucid and effortless emotion.

*Hawaii Conservation Week Event

Art and Conservation 

August 4th, 5-8 pm
The ARTS at Marks Garage
Free and open to the public

The reception will feature a “Splendor: Portraits of the Natural World” exhibit walk-through with Melissa Chimera, and a visual presentation, “Reimagining Biodiversity,” by photographer and author Susan Middleton. For more than 25 years, Susan Middleton’s photographs have explored the intersection of of art, science, and biodiversity. In this presentation, she creates a portrait of life through images taken from 1985 to the present.
Photo by Susan Middleton and David Liittschwager, ©2005
5:00 pm:  pupus, no host bar and artist walk-through
6:30 pm: "Reimagining Biodiversity"

Facebook user?

Let us know! RSVP to either or both of the Conservation Through Art events through the Hawai'i Conservation Alliance Foundation page.

Splendor: Portraits of the Natural World Reception

Art and Conservation

At the Hawai'i Convention Center 

On display for registered conference participants from August 2 - 4, 2011. Free and open to the public on August 3, 2011 from 3:30 - 7 p.m.

Noname2Photo by Susan Middleton and David Liittschwager, ©2005 This year’s Conservation through Art exhibit features several works; a selection of images from Susan Middleton’s and David Liittschwager’s book and exhibition “Archipelago: Portraits of Life in the World’s Most Remote Island Sanctuary” and the marine debris artworks “The Lighter Side of the Albatross “by Susan Scott and “Sharkastics” by Cheryl King.  Also on display at the convention center are the FOCUS project murals created by youth, local artists and conservationists.

FOCUS (Forests, Oceans, Climate and Us): Conservation Through Art Initiative

On display for registered conference participants from August 2 - 4, 2011.
Free and open to the public on August 3, 2011 from 3:30 - 7 p.m.

FOCUS is a unique partnership launched on June 13, 2009 between the US Forest Service, National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the Wyland Foundation that inspires water conservation and natural resource appreciation from the forest to the sea. This year national coordinators decided to host the fun and innovative program in Hawaii with support of local sponsor and coordinator, the DLNR-Division of Forestry and Wildlife. FOCUS empowers young people to become clean water ambassadors working within their communities to foster long-term natural resource conservation efforts. Through FOCUS’s concepts of study, exploration, and celebration, students and community gain a comprehensive understanding of water management, climate and the importance of sustainable ecosystems in everyday lives. Students across the state of Hawai‘i have painted 16 murals representing their connections to Hawai‘i’s unique natural and cultural resources.

About the Artists


Melissa Chimera, a Honolulu native, is an oil painter, mixed media artist and Haleakala National Park ranger. She studied Natural Resources Management and painting at the University of Hawai‘i. Inspired by unknown rare species and the remote Hawaiian wilderness she helped protect, Chimera exhibits locally and internationally. In 2009, the United Arab Emirates commissioned Chimera to create portraits of endangered species for the Sharjah Biennial along side poetry by her mother, Adele Ne Jame. That same year, the Chinese government invited her to create and exhibit work on the subject of Tibet, which is currently on tour in the U.S. mainland. Chimera currently keeps a studio in Makawao, Maui.


Born in New Jersey to Lebanese-American parents, Adele Ne Jame has lived in Hawai‘i since 1969. Her books of poetry are Inheritance (Ridgeway Press, 1989), Field Work (Petronium Press, 1996), Poems, Land and Spirit (Bindoun Press, 2009), and The South Wind (Mānoa Books, El Leon Liternary Arts, 2011). Her work has appeared in several  American Nature Writing anthologies published
by the Sierra Club and in various Arab American anthologies, including Inclined to Speak (Arkansas UP 2008). She has taught at the University of Hawai‘i, Mānoa and at the University of Wisconsin, Madison as Poet-in-Residence. She is a recipient of the Pablo Neruda prize for poetry, Academy of American Poet's prizes and a National Endowment in the Arts for Poetry. Ne Jame lives in Honolulu, Hawai‘i and currently teaches at the Hawai‘i Pacific University.


Susan Middleton is a photographer and author specializing in the portraiture of rare and endangered animals, plants, sites, and cultures for the past 30 years. She was Chair of the Department of Photography at the California Academy of Sciences from 1982 to 1995, where she currently serves as Research Associate. Her most recent book is Evidence of Evolution (Abrams 2009).  Previous books in collaboration with David Liittschwager include Archipelago and Remains of a Rainbow (National Geographic); Witness and Here Today (Chronicle Books). She has produced films and exhibitions in conjunction with her book projects.
Middleton was awarded a Guggenheim fellowship in 2009. She is the recipient of an Endangered Species Coalition Champion Award for Education and Outreach and a Bay & Paul Foundation Biodiversity Leadership Award. Middleton’s photographs have been exhibited and published throughout the world, both in fine art and natural history contexts. She lives in San Francisco.