In celebration of Hawaiian Airline’s upcoming second anniversary on the New Zealand market, a secretive pair of New Zealand street artists, who work under the name BMD, were commissioned to paint one of the airline’s ground service trucks in their distinctive style.
The artwork, rendered in hues of purple, blue, pink and orange to complement the airline’s own branding, features the natural landscapes, native animals and cultural background that are common to both regions.
One side of the vehicle has been painted with culturally significant Hawaiian images, including waka, native animals and its indigenous language, while New Zealand references feature on the other side, including the kiwi, Maui’s dolphin, ferns, weta and Māori iconography, a release says.
BMD, who prefer to remain anonymous, letting their art speak for them, say the artwork took them more than 50 hours to complete, with the finished piece unveiled at the end of Honolulu’s famed ‘POW! POW!’ art festival, which sees hundreds of artists and musicians from around the world come together on Honolulu for a week of art, music and culture. BMD was one of five New Zealand artists participating in the festival.
“We jumped at the chance to collaborate with Hawaiian Airlines and create something unique and culturally significant for both island destinations," said BMD in a joint statement. "It was an ambitious project, but we love a challenge and we’re really proud of the finished product.”
The duo have made quite a name for themselves, with their distinctive large-scale artworks strewn across the streets in New Zealand’s major cities, including Auckland, Wellington, New Plymouth (where the two are from) and Christchurch (the writer of this article even has a piece of theirs at the end of her street) and also in Australia.
Last September, Microsoft Surface and FCB hooked up with the creative duo to showcase the utility of the tablet in allowing artists to collaborate and bring ideas to life. More than 500 ideas were shared with the artists over the course of the campaign, and the duo eventually settled on an entry from Facebooker Rob Thorne. The winning concept was for the two to paint 55 Maui dolphins, the number of dolphins remaining at the time, StopPress reported earlier.
In addition to commissioning the pair of artists to bring the concept to life, Microsoft also committed to matching every share of the BMD Surface video with $1 (to a maximum value of $25,000), to be given to the WWF in support of the Maui dolphin cause.
Hawaiian Airlines Regional Director for New Zealand and Australia Gai Tyrrell says working with New Zealand artists to showcase elements of New Zealand and Hawaiii right on the tarmac is a bright, visual way to mark the upcoming second anniversary of the airline flying to Auckland.
“Supporting Hawaiian and Pacific art and culture is important to us and is why we’ve sponsored POW! WOW! We’d seen BMD’s work and saw this as a great opportunity to invite New Zealand artists to collaborate with us and celebrate our two unique cultures colliding.”