Kim Taylor Reece, Hawaii’s foremost fine art photographer, has been studying hula kahiko for nearly 25 years. A catalyst of Hawaii’s Cultural Renaissance, his photography captures the mystery and magic of this dance, which for generations has excited the imaginations of people around the world.
In his research, Kim has traveled with the Hawaii State Foundation of Culture and the Arts, enabling him to study and work with dancers from more than 37 different Pacific Islands. His extensive research of costumes and dances of the early Hawaiians captures the spirit and essence of this ancient ritual.
His unique style has established the visual standards for hula kahiko. As millions encounter Kim’s work everyday, it helps to preserve the hula and enrich lives with his fine art photography.
Kim’s award winning photography has brought him worldwide recognition. Over the years, Kim has received 15 Pele Awards (communication and arts), Print Magazine Awards, Kahili Awards (HVCB), Travel Journalism Awards and National Community Service Awards. His images have been acquired by collectors, dignitaries, and museums internationally.
He studied art at Long Beach State in California and because he is color-blind was told to "change majors or be a starving artist". He uses it to his advantage in capturing the subtleties of the kahiko in black and white. He uses sepia tone to represent the timelessness of the dance. Kim has been publishing his art prints since 1983.
Kim has a gallery at Sacred Falls, Oahu, Hawaii. "The beauty in nature of the lush green valley and the striking blue ocean exemplifies what I am trying to portray through my work." Says the artist of his remote location.
For those who appreciate hula, Kim Taylor Reece has devoted his talents to the celebration of Hawaii’s ancient dance.