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“The environment was harsh. The food was basic. The drinks… tasteless! I started cursing myself for my stupidity and wanted to go back, but my passion for adventure was becoming an obsession.

“Three weeks out I encountered a seemingly unsurmountable obstacle. An untamed river with black torrents of sure death obstructing my path. It appeared too risky to cross and I would have to continue on foot – but my mental drive disagreed. It would be dangerous, but I slid a hollowed log into the dark rapid water and disaster struck almost immediately as I lost control, flipped and headed toward the unforgiving waterfall. At the end of what seemed like an eternity, I was thrown over the abyss. 

“I”m not sure how I survived, but eventually I landed on the shore, hoping to escape what lay behind me. “What was it all for?” I thought. Shaking the memories like sand from my sandals, I moved forward, with no particular direction, but a definite goal in mind. Something new, something old. Something I had been missing. Something… forbidden. After what seemed like weeks of exploring the deep tropical forest, I stumbled upon it. Standing like ancestral god before me, there it was - the answer to all of my prayers…”

– Excerpt, Unknown Journal, 1959

Artist Ken Holewczynski is the man behind House of Tabu, a multi-facted umbrella for Ken's various Tiki mugs, glassware designs and of course, the Tiki scene's only full-color quarterly publication, Exotica Moderne. With a background in illustration and comic books, Ken has translated his love of the Tiki and lowbrow art scene and cocktails into a steady line of sought after designs.

Additionally, he is the creator behind the tongue-firmly-in-cheek secret society, The Order of the Golden Fez, which features it's own line of Tiki mugs, Degree pins and other artifacts to confuse and confound friends and enemies alike.

He hand sculpts and produces his own mugs in-house, in addition to designing each issue of Exotica Moderne.