Pohaku - A Desire to Learn

June 25th, 2009

Pohaku - A Desire to Learn

This is a lovely video clip shot by Johann Bouit for PacificNetwork's Arts Channel where we profile many local artists. Pohaku Kaho'ohanohano is a master weaver who has been working his craft since he was 19 years old having learned that both his grandparents were weavers themselves and the art had skipped one generation. His desire to learn was so great that as a teenager he sought out different weavers to teach him what has since become his life's work. His weaving is unique because he learned from many teachers.  Some were elders, others were from different Pacific cultures, with varied styles. So at his youthful age we call him a master weaver because of his diverse knowledge and dedication. Pohaku lives deep in the Honokahau Valley on the island of Maui.  His work is available for purchase when you can find him at a crafts fair here and there.  He does not use the Internet so he will probably not know we are sending his video out to tell the world what a fine job he does in preserving his native culture and art and that he is appreciated.  For more of his story visit Pacific Network  http://arts.pacificnetwork.tv/Artists/

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2 Responses to “Pohaku - A Desire to Learn”

  1. moke young:


    I've always wondered how many male weavers there really were and figured that it was a trade dominated by women and perhaps since they had better natural dexterity as was the case with Radium Watch Dial painters of the past.

    The hat with triangles around the head band area is simply amazing & something that really excites me. Great design!

    My friend, Mike Kaawa, is one of few Hawaiian entertainers whom always wears a woven hat with broken Kukui nut shells as an outer band.

    I have a nice one with a Chinese ring-neck pheasant feather band here in NY that stays in the showcase and I am tempted to wear it this summer.

    Much Aloha to Pohaku for fine demo.

    Mahalo's for keeping the fire burning with your desire to pass up so many paths for one of tradition because the art will continue while hoping too that you may pass along your mana to those Keiki whom share the same views and passion.

    I wear a short brimmed hat all of the time to help control my long hair and wished it were a Lauhala one with the black triangles!

    Your product would do very well in the Surfing market!


    With Aloha,

    Moke Young

  2. elee:

    Hi Moke,

    Too bad Pohaku doesn't use Internet, no computer back there in the deep of valley, but some one might mention to him. I have not seen a hat with broken Kukui nut shells, sounds great. My friend, Kawika, wore a lei that was huge opihi shells I have never seen before. Heavy, not black shell, grey green. He said the size was unusually big and it was gorgeous and very masculine. xoxo edgy