Maui Muralists Hope Lifeboat Tower Artwork Honors Island’s Water Warriors
MAUI (HawaiiNewsNow) — Lifeguard towers are generally all business — convenient platforms for lifeguards. However, some towers on Maui are now works of art.
Three artists, each born and raised on Maui, each received three rescue rounds to showcase their work. They say it’s a tribute to the water warriors of the island.
“They literally save lives every day,” said Maui artist Bailey Onaga.
“We honor them,” said Maui artist Matthew Agcolicol.
“We wanted to do our best,” said Jaclynn Sabado-Eitel, also an artist from Maui.
Sabado-Eitel hopes her mural at Hookipa Beach Park will showcase the beauty of Maui. His mural shows a surfer, a fisherman, a honu and a windsurfer.
“It’s just an awesome beach, an awesome place for keiki,” she said. “Now being a mom just brings me back to being a kid here on Maui and playing in the sand and what a beautiful place it really is.”
For Agcolicol, he hopes his mural at Kamaole Beach Park II will honor ocean first responders.
“I got a lot of inspiration seeing the pohuehue crawling over the mounds of sand, the naupaka anchored on both sides of the tower,” he said. “I saw a lifeguard rig hanging from the tower…and to me that kind of symbolizes that they’re always ready.”
Down the street at Kamaole Beach Park 1 is artist Onaga. The Kamehameha Schools graduate said her mural honors ocean safety lifeguards for their sacrifices.
“I don’t consider this my painting in any way, it’s their home, it belongs to the community,” Onaga said. “It’s also to deter vandalism and not invite other pilau things.”
South Maui County Ocean Safety District Captain Kekai Brown said the artwork was “incredible.”
“Grateful and thankful that they took my vision of being standardized and professional and combined it with their talent,” Brown said.
The Ocean Safety Division reports to the Maui Fire Department. Maui Fire Chief Bradford Ventura said the goal was to bring attention to the towers.
“It’s important to recognize our Ocean Safety Officers for all the work they do and the lifesaving actions they take every day,” he said.
Maui muralists hope this will set a trend for lifesaving towers around the world.
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