tape top

Diary of a Maui Web Designer

Taken By Wonder – Wes Bruce Exhibition


Yesterday, we ventured into wonder. The art exhibition currently at the Maui Arts and Cultural Center is phenomenal. “Taken By Wonder” – an art exhibition by Wes Bruce is a giant fort structure that takes you on a mythical journey through a living space inhabited by people from a different culture… different island… different time.

Outside view of the giant fort structure.

Outside view of the giant fort structure.

As you cruise through each intricate room of the structure, you find strange writings on the walls, which you can decipher by matching the symbols to letters to form words and sentences… all clues… clues of those left behind all for you to decipher. It all entices you to explore and discover the chambers. Each room more interesting than the other. Some rooms hidden, in which you must crawl to get to… but worth the effort.

wes-3When you first enter the structure, you feel as though you are in a rustic fort from your childhood, except this fort is “THE” fort of forts. Front entryway sports a fireplace mantle, hanging instruments, bones, bottles, and cryptic language scratched onto the walls. You venture further, coming to the Study filled with books and oddities… and room after room – each so bizzare. If you crawl up the netting from the Study, you come to an observation deck, complete with a telescope to view the constellations above.

chair roomEach room is more wondrous than the next. Never knowing what to expect next, you enter a world of wonder. There was a room with a hanging rocking chair held up delicately by colorful strings. It looked sturdy enough to hold us up, but we didn’t dare.

We felt like we were kids again, climbing up steep stairways to secret rooms and hallways, crawling on our knees at certain points to catch a glimpse of a giant shell in an interior room… I’m not sure if we saw everything… even though we visited every room several times, looking for more and more wonder of delight.

Wes Bruce is an emerging artist originally from Northern California, where as a child he spend much time building incredible forts. This childhood passion has led him to building huge art exhibitions as seen in ‘The Fort’ at the Escondido Center for the Arts back in 2010, and at the LUX Art Center. What a treat to have Wes Bruce fill the gallery at the MACC with his incredible, whimsical fort creation. Wes Bruce is the MACC’s first artist-in-residence. He came to Maui for a month, staying at several different people’s homes during the course of his stay as he built his giant fort.

The exhibition will be up until November 2nd, 2013. So, if you haven’t seen it yet, please be sure to go see it. It’s really quite amazing.

Ben is wondering how we can take this fort home with us once the exhibition is over.

interior of fort, left of entryway

wes bruce interior room

wes bruce exterior

3 Responses to “Taken By Wonder – Wes Bruce Exhibition”

  1. Elaine Roe Says:

    “Ben is wondering how we can take this fort home with us once the exhibition is over.”

    YOU CAN!!!

    Nov 4-7: Take A Piece of Wonder. Come by the gallery during the deinstallation to find a special piece of the exhibit to take home and repurpose. 10 am – 2 pm.


    What a great write up! I’ll be sure to share it with Wes!

    Elaine Roe
    Marketing Coordinator
    Maui Arts & Cultural Center

  2. Syl Says:

    Thanks, Elaine! I think Ben has his name on a list for a few items. Although, he’s dreaming of moving the fort to our front yard! 😉

  3. Elinor Gawel (Eli) Says:

    What fun. I wish I had a kid to take with me. I’ll just have to take the kid in me, if she’ll come.

Leave a Reply