John Kelly . . . Hawaii’s Most Beloved Artist

John Kelly
JK Healani 16x13Healani” by John Kelly

With a palette as muted as twilight in the tropics, the art of John Kelly graced the menu covers at the Royal Hawaiian Hotel in the early 1950’s

JK Big Surf 16x13

John Melville Kelly arrived in Honolulu in 1923 to take a position for one year with Town and Country homes, Inc. , a real estate development company. The picturesque quality of the Hawaiian landscape, the grace and quite charm of the Hawaiian people, and the interesting racial mixtures found here wove their spell in the heart and soul of his sensitive artist. The one year lengthened into 30 years. During this time he became one of Hawaii’s most constant and devoted exponents. In his final years his palette and style were influenced by the ancient frescoes of the Orient.

JK Fisherman 16x13

The aforementioned Royal Hawaiian Menu Covers are legendary… and since there was a different image for each day of the week, the hotel guests were encouraged to keep them as souvenirs. Although thousands were printed, few complete sets survive. We have collected and offer the 7 part suite… 6 lovely ladies and an outrigger canoe!

Mahalo for all your support! If you read this blog and are interested in John Kelly’s work,  check out more details on each piece under Hawaiian Nostalgia >> John Kelly . If you want to add this brilliant artist to your collection, use code: “blogger” to take an additional 10% off your order! We will be adding Blogs regularly every Wednesday so stay tuned.

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