Shaka Funk Design Co
Shaka Funk Design Co. is the creative agency founded by two Native Hawaiian friends, John P. and Sean E. Graduating together from Kamehameha Schools Kapālama, both individuals continued their education respectively in Oregon, at Pacific Northwest College of the Arts and Pacific University. During their college career, John and Sean submerged themselves in Hawaiian Culture, focusing on language, dance, and the visual arts. These practices helped sustain the creative driving force to create Shaka Funk. Shaka Funk is dedicated to representing a unique brand of Native Hawaiian Culture that redefines relevance and importance in this modern day and age.
“This piece started as a digital collage produced with the purpose of creating a visual timeline of colonization in Hawai’i. We started with statehood and continued it with the Hawaiian Renaissance period of the 1960’s and the 1970’s. Building layers upon layers of context, the landscape is the duality of interpretation from American or Colonial news in contrast to storytelling from the Kanaka Maoli perspective. As the newspaper is torn away, you can see prominent figures emerging through as the anchor for these articles urging you to look deeper into the systematic decimation of Hawaiian Culture and in turn our HI-story. Of the prominent figures we chose, we recognized King David Kalakaua, Duke Kahanamoku, George Helm Jr., Haunani Trask, Eddie Aikau, and King Kamehameha the Great. In short, this is our interpretation of our answer to a drawn out question posed to Native Hawaiians today from foreigners: Are we Hawaiian or American?”
—John P. and Sean E. / Shaka Funk Design Co.