"Life on Maui is sweet,
full, rich, green, and blue.
I forget how beautiful it is when I am away.
I am always stunned by it when I return."
- Julia Cost, visual artist & choreographer
Painting by Julia Allisson Cost
18" x 24", Oil on Canvas
"Halau Na Lei Kaumaka O Uka"
Original painting sold, giclee reproductions available at the Curtis Wilson Cost Gallery in the Kula Lodge, Maui, Hawaii.
Julia is honored to have had the opportunity to paint the beautiful dancers of Halau Na Lei Kaumaka O Uka.
Julia Cost, born and raised on Maui, Hawaii,
is the daughter of Hawaii artist Curtis Wilson Cost
granddaughter of the late California artist, James Peter Cost.
Julia and I met for lunch and not only was I impressed by her work (the one featured above is even more stunning in person) but by her intensity about what inspires her.
Growing up on Maui:
"I think growing up on Maui made me feel profoundly drawn to nature.
I find myself calm and clear in nature and tend to feel frazzled, on guard,
and desperate for open space and to see the horizon line
when I am in city environments.
I think growing up on Maui also filled me
with a lot of respect and curiosity about the rest of the world.
I was raised in an intensely interconnected community
that served, protected, and pushed me along every step of the way.
But I always had this gnawing sense that there was so much more out there
of which I was not aware.
I think growing up on Maui taught me humility in that way.
I always knew we were small.
We were taught to be curious, humble, and open, and also very proud of our beautiful home."
About her work:
"I have spent a significant portion of my life studying dance
and I have a keen interest in movement, gesture, posture, and the subtlies of body language.
I find that the "point" for me of a lot of my paintings is to convey the way that a body/ bodies moved.
From my paintings that show something as simple as the way a woman's hand is holding down the page of a book,
to a piece as overtly about movement as the dancers in
"Halau Na Lei Kaumaka O Uka".
I am always looking for still images that resist stillness....
in which I can feel the life of someone, the sway and swing of their weight, the fall of their foot, the tilt of their head, the lightness or pressure of their being. This feels alive to me. This feels interesting and magical to render in pigment on canvas. Not all of my work pictures people, but I think that all of it attempts to hold onto and dig deeper into some fleeting, resounding, fascinating moment."
Cost has been painting professionally since 2005.
Her work is exhibited and sold in the Curtis Wilson Cost Gallery in Kula, Maui, HI.
Julia has a MFA in Dance from the University of CA, Irvine, and a double BA in Studio Art and Dance from Scripps College.
She currently lives in Berkeley, CA.