Maui Art Gallery, How the Pandemic Forced the Discovery of a Hidden Talent

The Covid Pandemic hit Hawaii harder than any other state, and the unemployment rate was proof of that. Many had no choice but to close their businesses. Many had to abandon their dreams. Without tourism, Hawaii was in a disastrous situation. 25% of all businesses in Hawaii would permanently close their doors.

While everyone deserted their brick and mortar storefronts, one individual was marching against the grain. Former Gallery Director Michael John Peters had another plan. “I sold Art for a living. There was no more art on the island. For me the idea was obvious.” So Peters began to teach himself how to paint. After 3 months he had sold 130 artworks on ebay. The very first to make a purchase of his work, was Sean Ashley, owner of Genius Fine Art. “That’s how I knew I could do this” Peters recalls. “I tested my art online”.

Peters would go on to open his own art gallery featuring his work in Kihei, at the Azeka Shopping Center. Soon after his artwork was on display in Singapore at the “Arts For Humanity” exhibition. ‘ He joined Etsy and sold 109 originals in the first month. Forbes magazine gave a noteworthy mention to Peters and his gallery when he was published in one of the magazines NFT articles.

Peters favorite accomplishment however is the creation of the world’s first 4 phase artworks. “They exist in 4 different visual states depending on the environment they occupy.” “I could describe it to you in detail but you just have to see it. You’re going to be delighted.”


Times have been good and bad for Peters, who said he almost gave up a few times. “I didn’t get any big funding from the government. I officially opened my business 2 days past the cutoff for any help.” He recalled that he had to sell his private collection of art to get by. It was hard, but Peters had a goal. “I wasn’t going to let Maui Art Gallery fail. That is not an option to me”.


No matter how tough it got, Peters and the Maui Art Gallery were always striving to help those around them. “The community is family and I was just doing my part” he said quietly. During the pandemic Peters contributed his time and efforts with The Boys And Girls Club, Women Helping Women, Autistic Wellness Center, Alzheimer’s Association, Maui Food Bank, and several others. “I just want people to hold on to their dreams…..while I continue to color mine” Peters continued.


The 38 year old self taught artist admits that his journey has been tough on him. Working 18 hours a day for over 400 days strait. Trying to make up lost ground and improve upon the skills he never knew he had. “If anyone can take something positive from me, I want it to be the older adults. Anyone out there who thinks their to old to learn a new language, or an instrument, or a dirt bike even. You’re not to old, let go of fear, be who you want to be.”

More info:

For inquiries directly with Michael John Peters, you may call the gallery at the info below.

Media Contact
Company Name: Maui Art Gallery
Contact Person: Michael John Peters
Email: Send Email
Phone: 808.250.3103
Address:1279 S. Kihei Road
City: Kihei
State: Hawaii, 96753
Country: United States