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Tiki Central Forums General Tiki Waikiki Tiki; Art, History and Photographs OFFICIAL THREAD
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Waikiki Tiki; Art, History and Photographs OFFICIAL THREAD
Dustycajun
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 16, 2007
Posts: 4252
From: Santa Barbara, CA
Posted: 2010-12-29 7:34 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2010-12-28 17:14, Phillip Roberts wrote:

This door panel used to reside at the Trader Vic's in the International Market Place. It's now on Ahua Street.




Wow, that is the same door panel that graces the Chuck's of Hawaii restaurant in Santa Barbara (around the corner from my house).








Wonder if it came over from Hawaii?


DC


 
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christiki295
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 09, 2003
Posts: 3811
From: LA-2547 mls east Hawaii &5500 Easter Is
Posted: 2010-12-29 8:20 pm   Permalink

Excellent urban archeology, DC!

 
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Phillip Roberts
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 09, 2003
Posts: 1593
From: OAHU/Seattle
Posted: 2010-12-30 1:22 pm   Permalink

Aloha,



Here's the panels on the doors of the closed Trader Vic's at the International Market Place about 2004. As you can see, both panels are identical. There was only one on the site at Ahua Street.

The one at Chuck's looks the same but upside down. BTW, how is that Chuck's? We only have 2 left and I haven't been there in years. I think the last time I was in one was with Pablus.

_________________
Waikiki Tiki; Art, History, and Photographs.
Available now from
Bess Press Hawaii.

[ This Message was edited by: Phillip Roberts 2010-12-30 13:23 ]

[ This Message was edited by: Phillip Roberts 2011-01-07 21:30 ]


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THOR's
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 30, 2004
Posts: 594
Posted: 2010-12-31 06:00 am   Permalink



Today's out take is the second of the three (lost) "Thor Stor" locations. This one was on Lewers Street before moving across to the new Beachwalk complex. Now, the third location has been replaced by the "Diamond Head Gallery" and has some of Thor, Dennis Mathewson and other artists work.

Hey Phil!! Great book...Let me help with filling in some back story facts here regarding Thor Stors.... Since many have asked about history of "Thor Stor"

When we were on Kalakaua Ave. We were doing GREAT. We received raves of appreciation and returning customers and building our dream to bring Tiki back to a place that was losing it's appreciation for the culture rapidly. The first Thor Stor was ALL about celebrating the Poly Pop culture and Tiki. Max and I had built the entire interior and the place was packed to the gills daily. People would walk in smiling, savoring the spirit and vibe we worked too cultivate. We supported many fellow Tiki product creators..Holden will tell yah we had a display of Tiki Farm mugs that no other location in Hawaii could compare to. Local artist like Gecko were all part of this Ohana we embraced. We supported all the Tiki Ohana enchantment and energy was buzzing that you could feel when you walked in that place.

But after just over a year, the building Land Lord kicked us out just as we were really rolling because Jimmy Buffet wanted to lease the entire Beachcomber building from where the old Don Ho Show was above us down through the Thor Stor. ..and money talks! Today in the first Thor Stor Location and above it we have "Margaritaville"........(silence).

Publishers of the Thor program then thought it a good idea to put the Stor on the new Beachwalk project location on Lewers tat was just developing. BIG MISTAKE! We had a VERY tiny Stor. (seen in photo here)...and no one could find us. Terrible traffic and location. All businesses opening on Beachwalk were suffering like mad.

Tabora Gallery across the street near the Yard House looked a little better we thought, maybe, but they were doing so poorly selling art they offered the location to us and Publishers, who co-owned the lease with Tabora and so, moved us across to there. But that was beginning of the BIG economy plunge....and traffic was terrible, and the publishers kept saying "Tiki" was part of the issue..that no one really cared about the vintage stuff..the Tiki Culture..etc in Hawaii. My whole goal was MORE atmosphere and Tiki immersion in the stor's...like the first Thor Stor. This is what made it work.

It wasn't just about selling paintings to those with the large expendible incomes..it was about a vibe..a warmth and offering some piece of this to take with you, be it a mug for 15 bucks or prices and things all in between. Yes, larger original art and collector art as well that I created. It was an experience as well as a place to buy some thing that spoke to you. We developed great friendships with our customers and other business owners...and spent many nights after shows/signings when we would go to Duke's or La Marriana with customers that kept returning and became our new friends.

Well, I was out voted, the "Stor" was stripped of any remaining Tiki character or atmosphere and publishers told me "high end gallery" look was what Waikiki wants now....and so this destroyed the entire momentum Max and I wanted in the beginning. The warmth and character of vintage past was flushed out once again. I heard from countless customers that the entire feel and charm was "sterilized" and frankly, I didn't know what to say...it was out of my hands.

With Max onto other projects in Waikiki, and a string of horrid management replacing that void, the main Thor Stors disintegrating to a vanilla shell Gallery with mixed art. This totally took away my passion to participate and so today it is back to a "High end Art Gallery" and I have supported far less of my work contribution today.

It does not attract ANY of the same customers as those who are drawn to my style of work. A recent discussion I had with the current manager at that location said it all for me. "Thor, if you would paint less crazy sh..t and do some flowers or moons over the water...you would clean up here at this location!". I will leave it at that.

For now, the only Thor Stor is in Honolulu, as part of the NEX mall, though it is doing extremely well. Max and I themed that one out about three years ago. But stay tuned for future...."real" Tiki as most of you know and can feel will keep re-emerging...and I will plant the seeds always to support that spirit as an artist over dumbing down any of my images or inspiration, simply to sell to the mainstream. It is this pattern that seems to break down Tiki whenever it rises from the ashes. But I believe in the Tiki community..that we are all too stubborn and passionate to ever let this spirit die...for the last time.

Aloha, THOR



[ This Message was edited by: THOR's 2010-12-31 06:53 ]


 
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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11107
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2010-12-31 08:41 am   Permalink

Thanks for the full report, Thor, that was very enlightening, and I don't think anybody was aware of the full background of that particular (d)evolution. A great example of how location and so-called "market forces" (or what they are perceived as) play an important role in the survival of a business - no matter if the heart and spirit are in the right place. They want you to paint Dolphins and rainbows, Thor! I am glad you are not caving in, and I am sure that sticking to your beliefs will eventually bear fruit again.

If people would just realize that catering to lowest common denominator will suck all the mana out of any product...
I applaud you and all and every Tiki artist here for doing what they believe in, no matter if the "public" will necessarily like it or buy it, and for continuing to create for the pure love of Tiki. I have had the good fortune so far of having had just enough outside-of-Tiki work to allow me to spend all this time and energy for spreading the Tiki gospel, and I wish everyone to be able to strike that fine balance between art and survival in the new year.


 
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THOR's
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 30, 2004
Posts: 594
Posted: 2010-12-31 10:00 am   Permalink

WELL SAID BIG BRO!! WELL SAID! Doing the same here!!! The race is far from over..and I am loving the challenge!! Thanks to Phil here too..he has been a great influence in sharing this passion as well with his book! Great to be among such Ohana. HAPPY NEW YEAR
_________________

Best way to reach me for art or questions directly is this link: https://www.facebook.com/tom.thordarson.3
OR Search on Facebook for : THOR ART


 
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Phillip Roberts
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 09, 2003
Posts: 1593
From: OAHU/Seattle
Posted: 2010-12-31 8:03 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2010-12-31 06:00, THOR's wrote:

Hey Phil!! Great book...




Thanks Tom!
Quote:


Today in the first Thor Stor Location and above it we have "Margaritaville"........(silence).




Well, Buffett's at the Beachcomber, (which has some tiki) but anyway...

Quote:


All businesses opening on Beachwalk were suffering like mad.




Including the excellent "Holokai Grill" which closed in Febuary 2009, along with the last Spencecliff showroom, Hawaiian Hut.

Quote:


But I believe in the Tiki community..that we are all too stubborn and passionate to ever let this spirit die...for the last time.



I declare this community STRONG as we go into 2011. My book Waikiki Tiki: Art, History and Photographs is not only selling well on-line but in Waikiki itself. People are starting to realize what has been lost and how the Beachcomber's dream refuses to die. "La Mariana," "Da Big Kahuna," and "Tiki's Grill and Bar" is doing well (and has a great new drink menu and chef.) Okolemaluna has opened on the Big Island. The Edition has a bartender that understands crafting exotic drinks. Artists are creating new Tiki work in Hawaii far beyond Gecko and Van Tiki. Disney is coming in at Ko'olina with their new resort. The "Hawaii 5-0" show is bringing the goods in subliminal images that will last a long time. There has never been more interest in the sacred forms (Ku reunion) on display at the Bishop Museum.

As always, it's an ebb and flow in the islands... It'll just take some time. Be patient. We are winning, despite some setbacks.



This outtake is a bit of a mystery. There are a few of these panels on Ahua street. The owner rescued them from the International Market Place. I cannot exactly attribute them to a single location beyond that yet.

_________________
Waikiki Tiki; Art, History, and Photographs.
Available now from
Bess Press Hawaii.

[ This Message was edited by: Phillip Roberts 2011-01-07 21:31 ]


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WaikikianMoeKele
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 25, 2008
Posts: 474
From: West Leroy, Pennsylvania
Posted: 2010-12-31 8:34 pm   Permalink

Less than 30 minutes til 2011 here on the east coast... hanging in there, but 2010 was a difficult year... looking for a much better year of 2011 (& if anyone has a job opening for a talented & dedicated civil engineering/surveying draftsperson I would be extremely happy to hear from you!) Happy New Year!!!!
~kele


 
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Dustycajun
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 16, 2007
Posts: 4252
From: Santa Barbara, CA
Posted: 2010-12-31 9:08 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2010-12-30 13:22, Phillip Roberts wrote:
BTW, how is that Chuck's? We only have 2 left and I haven't been there in years. I think the last time I was in one was with Pablus.




Phillip,

Thanks for posting the pic of the doors at Trader Vic's. I will have to ask the manager at Chucks in SB if they know anything about the history of the front door.

Here is a postcard I have from the original Chucks of Hawaii located in Waikiki.



The SB Chucks is a good steak house with the decent Mai Tai. They opened a second location at the harbor in Santa Barbara that includes the Endless Summer restaurant on the second floor which is like a surf museum with some Tiki.

I got your book from Christmas and have been thoroughly enjoying it.

DC


 
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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11107
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2011-01-01 01:31 am   Permalink

Man, that Waikiki Chuck's was one great time warp, untouched by renovation...until Lewers got taken out.

 
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Phillip Roberts
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 09, 2003
Posts: 1593
From: OAHU/Seattle
Posted: 2011-01-02 12:22 pm   Permalink

[quote]
On 2010-12-31 21:08, Dustycajun wrote:
Quote:


I got your book from Christmas and have been thoroughly enjoying it.



Mahalo DC. I agree that original Chuck's was awesome! It was a shame to lose.
I didn't have a good original pic of it so I didn't include it.

There was also that small cement sculpture of the Hawaiian Islands about mid-street on the groud that was also lost when Hemuloa street vanished. My picture of that was very blurry. I also didn't have a good picture of "The Tropics" that hadn't been seen before. There's a couple of postcards out showing that restaurant. The House of Hong (a good mai-tai) and a few others were fun in the last days of lower Lewers street.





This House fronting Kamehameha Highway before Laie has these small carvings.

_________________
Waikiki Tiki; Art, History, and Photographs.
Available now from
Bess Press Hawaii.

[ This Message was edited by: Phillip Roberts 2011-01-07 21:25 ]


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Phillip Roberts
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 09, 2003
Posts: 1593
From: OAHU/Seattle
Posted: 2011-01-02 8:54 pm   Permalink

Waikiki Tiki: Art, History and Photographs got a great review from The Careless Navigator!

http://carelessnavigator.com/island-trader/2011/01/the-careless-navigator-looks-at-phillip-roberts-waikiki-tiki/

Thanks Swizzle!

TC Thread on Christian's Hut, Honolulu Circa, 1957

Missing Goof?


_________________
Waikiki Tiki; Art, History, and Photographs.
Available now from Bess Press Hawaii.

[ This Message was edited by: Phillip Roberts 2012-04-17 20:11 ]


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Phillip Roberts
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 09, 2003
Posts: 1593
From: OAHU/Seattle
Posted: 2011-01-07 9:29 pm   Permalink

Lost posts/pictures from the great tikicentral white out of 2011...



Msteelin had asked if I had a shot of the concrete island group between Beachwalk and Lewers Street on Hemuloa Street. I did.



Haleiwa Town

I could use some more reviews on
Http://Amazon.com !! Mahalos! Phillip
_________________
Waikiki Tiki; Art, History, and Photographs.
Available now from Bess Press Hawaii.

[ This Message was edited by: Phillip Roberts 2011-01-07 21:50 ]

[ This Message was edited by: Phillip Roberts 2011-01-11 23:10 ]


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msteeln
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 24, 2008
Posts: 280
From: Ka'a'awa, HI
Posted: 2011-01-08 11:29 am   Permalink

Quote:


msteeln had asked if I had a shot of the concrete island group on Hemuloa Street. I did.



Aw, that's real nice of you, much appreciated. That old school kitschiness is another thing missing from our lives today.


 
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Phillip Roberts
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 09, 2003
Posts: 1593
From: OAHU/Seattle
Posted: 2011-01-11 11:11 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2011-01-08 11:29, msteeln wrote:

Aw, that's real nice of you, much appreciated. That old school kitschiness is another thing missing from our lives today.



No worries!



Giftshop at the Crouching Lion Inn.

_________________
Waikiki Tiki; Art, History, and Photographs.
Available now from
Bess Press Hawaii.

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