Tiki Modern

Thanks to local tikiphile Monty Dunnington for selling me his used copy of Sven Kirsten’s Tiki Modern, and for offering it at a fair price. This completes my Sven collection, including the Book of Tiki, Tiki Pop, Tiki Style, and Sound of Tiki.

The book is long out of print, which is truly a shame since it is a really interesting look at the tiki art of the 1950s-1960s and it’s place amongst the larger Mid Century art movement and aesthetic. The part that reads most interesting to me, a decade after it was published, is the neutral tone of the text. It is almost like an anthropologist describing a culture on its own terms, not one made with modern sensibilities. It does not denigrate, nor celebrate, the art and architecture described in the book. It just describes it so that we can understand it.

Which isn’t to say that those current sensibilities should be ignored. Just that I appreciated the neutral tone. And there are a lot of fabulous images in the book as well.

Anyway, thanks to Sven Kirsten for the books over the years. 

New B-Rex Swag

So nice to see Brian and Mary Rechenmacher Trader Vic’s mini-Bazaar on Sunday. So many nice products, but I had to purchase the Collins glass set inspired by the Enchanted Tiki Room and also the cool new Camp Mug. Those are still available from the B-Rex store, so check it out and get those cool glasses and other items before they sell out.

It was so nice to have a quick toe-dip for indoor conversations and to check in with life changes and where everyone is heading. Thank goodness for the vaccines.

Woody Miller Art

Two of the treasures we picked up at the mini-bazaar at Trader Vic’s yesterday. These are from Woody Miller including a wood piece in his signature style. I really love the Moai-inspired mug with a wood style glaze.

Be sure to check out more of Woody’s art in the forthcoming issue of Exotica Moderne magazine, now available for pre-order at www.houseoftabu.com. Woody is the cover artist and I had the pleasure of interviewing Woody for the article. Some surprises inside.

Looks like we’ll be able to see more of Woody’s work at The Kon-Tiki Room at Palmetto in Oakland, opening very soon. Can’t wait.

With The Kon-Tiki Room opening in the same window as Woody’s cover story, everything is working out as Woody and I planned when we did the interview back in December. Yep, we totally planned this. No luck involved at all.

New Logo and Website Header by B-Rex

Today is the day for the official unveiling of the new Search for the Ultimate Mai Tai logo designed by B-Rex . I have been thinking about logos for some time and landed on B-Rex for a couple reasons. I’ve been a fan of his stylized Mai Tai pins and his art designs for some time. Plus, he is the only illustrator and artist who’ve served me an amazing Mai Tai many times as part of his other gig as a craft cocktail bartender. Brian was very easy to work with so if you are looking for something custom then I provide my highest recommendation.

In addition to the logo/social media icon, Brian also did the new header gracing UltimateMaiTai.com. Depending on which device you’re on you might not see the full header, but in any case it perfectly captures the fun of the search for the ultimate Mai Tai. It’s rum, it’s fresh lime, and there’s plenty of tiki elements, just like the real search.

Be sure to check out the B-Rex store for apparel, prints, pins, stickers, glassware and barware, masks, and more. www.brianrechenmacher.com 

Original Paper Bag Art by Tony Martinez

Tony Martinez made these on to-go bags from The Kon-Tiki in Oakland. I really love them both, so we decided to get them framed. The skull and The Kon-Tiki piece fits in well with the tiki esthetic. The “Drink Rum Do Crimes” is a stamp that’s… best viewed in a mirror (I like unique art). Both are great mementos of 2020 and are a tribute to my “hometown” tiki bar. Great job Tony! Keep up this style and artwork.

The frame work is from Creative Framing in Oakland. We really like the bamboo style and it was really easy to work with Heather on the project. Mahalo.


New Tiki Art