Displays of talent

There are a number of galleries and other establishments on Guam where a variety of artifacts may be viewed and/or purchased, ranging from locally-produced two and three dimensional artwork in contemporary or traditional styles, to imported works also in contemporary or traditional styles. By “traditional styles” is meant Micronesian artifacts from Guam and the neighboring Marianas, the Caroline and Marshall Island groups, and the Philippines. All locations listed here are currently free of admission charges.

The most prominent and consistent gallery displays on Guam are found at the Isla Center for the Arts at the University of Guam, the Guam Gallery of Art, the Guam Council on the Arts and Humanities Agency Gallery, also known as the CAHA Gallery, and at Framed Etc.. There is also the Infiniti Art Gallery, an automobile showroom which is an occasional exhibit venue.

Isla Center for the Arts

The Isla Center is located at 15 Dean’s Circle on the Campus of the University of Guam in Mangilao. It has from four to six shows a year that are on display for from two to three months duration. Many of Isla’s art shows are traveling exhibits from other institutions, or the work of selected off-island artists.

Isla also hosts a biannual juried exhibit for local and regional artists formerly called “Creative Hands” now titled “Artists of the Pacific Rim” which alternates with the local University Art Faculty biannual exhibit. Another local exhibit sponsored by Isla is the annual Art-A-Thon. This is an exhibit of selected works from the local school children’s fund raising event of the same name that provides funding for participating schools and Isla.

The Isla Center is also home to the University’s teaching collection of original 17th through 20th Century European and Japanese prints and vintage Micronesian artifacts which are sometimes put on display.

The idea for an art center was born in 1982 by art faculty of the University of Guam, and in 1984, the Isla Center for the Arts at the University of Guam held its first exhibit of works from the permanent collection in the renovated house-to-galleries location, 15 Dean’s Circle. Dean’s Circle was built adjacent to the campus in the mid 1960’s to serve as housing for senior faculty of the University of Guam. The housing units were slowly converted into offices, laboratories and classrooms for bourgeoning University programs in the early 1980s. Since 1984 Isla has consistently provided quality art exhibits to delight residents and visitors to Guam. Isla has recently acquired the neighboring house, number 14, and hopes to expand its services with lecture, workshop, and restoration facilities.

Guam Gallery of Art

The Guam Gallery of Art is owned and operated by local artist/entrepreneur Filamore Palomo Alcon, and is located in buildings 138a and 138b at the Chamorro Village in Hagåtña. The gallery displays and sells original artwork and reproductions by many local artists, and also has gift items such as art calendars and books. The Gallery features local artists by sponsoring month long displays of their work and also features special seasonal exhibits and art events.

The Guam Gallery of Art was one of the original enterprises doing business at the Chamorro Village which opened in December 1994.

CAHA Gallery

The Council of Arts and Humanities Agency Gallery is located in the Terlaje Building in Hagåtña. The CAHA Gallery offers space to local artists or groups to hang an exhibit usually for three weeks, but in some cases, exhibits may be extended a week or more. The range of exhibits that are held at the CAHA Gallery is diverse, from local school art groups, to local artists of established reputation and new artists, to historical displays honoring a prominent person or group in the community.

The CAHA Gallery was started in 1972 as the Insular Arts Council Gallery (The Insular Arts Council being the former name of the Guam Council on the Arts and Humanities Agency) and has occupied a variety of locations during its existence. It was first located in the International Trade Center building in Tamuning in the ground floor space now occupied by the Bank of Guam. It moved from there to Hagåtña in a building on Archbishop F.C. Flores street across from the Dulce Nombre Del Maria Cathedral. From there it was relocated to the GovGuam Retirement building in Maite, then to a building on San Vitores road in Tumon. It was moved to Puntan Dos Amantes in 1999 and to it’s present location in 2012.

Framed Etc.

Framed Etc. is located on West Soledad Avenue parallel to Marine Corps Drive in Hagåtña, just south of the Agana Boat Basin, and is another gallery owned and operated by a local artist/entrepreneur, Amy Selk. Framed Etc. deals exclusively with the work of local artists and crafters, and has original work and reproductions for sale. Framed Etc. first opened its doors in November 2002, and has been at the same location ever since.

Infiniti Art Gallery

The Infiniti Art Gallery is located in the Nissan automobile dealership showroom at 1012 North Marine Corps Drive in upper Tumon. Four times a year, once every quarter, the showroom is converted into an art gallery for a week or so. Local artists and organizations have successfully shown exhibits of original art work and traveling shows of historical importance.

The Infiniti Gallery is not a full time art showcase, but since its construction in 1993, the Infiniti dealership has “focused on combining its environment with space to support the arts.  The Infiniti facility has showcased many forms of art, including the performing arts.  In addition, Infiniti has continually provided support to artists young and old and is committed to continue this effort in the future.

Artistic Wood Products

Artistic Wood Products is located along the landward side of Route 4 in Ipan Talofofo about three miles south of Yona Village and 200 yards north of Jeff’s Pirates Cove; and it is owned and operated by ifit wood sculptor Michael (Mike) Genereux and his wife, Veronica. Artistic Wood Products deals only in sculptures carved by Mike, and his primary material is the very dense local ifit wood. The AWP site is also home to the Genereauxes and the workshop where Mike works and you can visit them everyday.

Others around the island

In addition to the above mentioned galleries, there are establishments that might be better described as cultural centers, gift/jewelry shops, or frame shops that also display and sell original regional art work and reproductions. They are Gef Pago Cultural Village, Art and Frames, Ifit Addao Yan Famaguon and Jeff’s Pirate’s Cove.

By Robert Sajnovsky