BOYS ON THE BEACH, 1985 (4’ by 18’) Politec monochromatic glaze painting in burnt umber, Reef Hotel, Honolulu, Hawai’i
While you can see the original line freehand line drawings of this mural, unfortunately, Calley did not record her earlier works, so no photographs exist that she has knowledge of. The boys were painted from two amazing photographs of boys on the island of Kaua’i on the beach nearly one hundred years ago (Circa 1915). The photographs were taken by famed photographer Ray Jerome Baker (1880 – 1972). The most accomplished photographer of his day in Honolulu, Baker’s work still informs and inspires anyone interested in the changes over time in Hawai’i. Baker photographed almost every street, corner and building in Honolulu, as well as the plant life and hundreds of local folks. A pioneering photographer and filmmaker, he travelled to sixty countries, and experimented with time-lapse photography, photographing a blossoming flower, and sharing it in 30 seconds on a screen.
His wife hand colored his glass slides for his lecture presentations. He worked commercially in Honolulu for the sugar cane and pineapple plantations and photographed tourists for their memorabilia.
There is something hauntingly beautiful and alive within these photographs.
Calley would spend hours and hours in the Bishop Museum Photo Archives, pouring through hundreds of photographs to see into the eyes of the Hawaiians of old. Bakers’ work was always among her favorites, and these two photos of boys on the beach really captured her imagination. A moment frozen in time… boys long ago turned to men and long gone, still alive in the images.
Calley's drawing of the Waikiki Duck Pond, which no longer exists, but did in the times of the boys on the beach.