The Bronx’s New York Botanical Garden will be the home of a landmark exhibition this year called: ‘Georgia O’Keeffe: Visions of Hawai‘i’ with over 15 of her paintings not seen together in New York since their debut 78 years ago.
On the heels of major exhibitions like last year’s Chihuly, and Frida Kahlo’s works and inspired gardens in 2015, this is yet another wonderful treat for Bronxites and art lovers from all over the world to be able to experience the art of Georgia O’Keeffe and enjoy a transformed Enid A. Haupt Conservatory transformed with the rich fauna of Hawai’i that inspired O’Keeffe’s works.
The New York Botanical Garden’s landmark 2018 exhibition, Georgia O’Keeffe: Visions of Hawai‘i, will focus on the iconic artist’s immersion in the Hawaiian Islands in 1939.
At a preview luncheon on January 23 at Grand Hyatt New York, Botanical Garden experts and the exhibition curator shared plans and background and announced that tickets are now on sale for the exhibition that will run from May 19 through October 28, 2018. Exhibition visitors will experience a lush flower show in the Garden’s Enid A. Haupt Conservatory evoking the gardens and landscapes that inspired O’Keeffe as well as the complex story ofthe flora and unique ecolog y of Hawai‘i. Curated by art historian Theresa Papanikolas, Ph.D., Deputy Director of Art and Programs at the Honolulu Museum of Art, the exhibition will feature 20 of O’Keeffe’s depictions of Hawai‘i—including paintings not seen together in New York since their 1940 debut. Visitors of all ages will learn about Hawai‘i through complementary events, programs, and demonstrations, including a film series, symposium, lecture, and the Interactive Mobile Guide.
The Enid A. Haupt Conservatory will feature the remarkable beauty and richness of Hawai‘i’s wild and cultivated flora. Featuring plantings designed by Francisca Coelho and set pieces designed byTony Award-winning set designer Scott Pask, the exhibition will also introduce visitors to the profound importance of plants in Hawaiian culture and growing concerns about threats to native Hawaiian plants. The centerpiece will be long borders of colorful tropical garden plants such as those Georgia O’Keeffe encountered and painted while in Hawai‘i.
These borders will burst with the dazzling flowers of ti, frangipani, bougainvillea, heliconia, hibiscus, bird of paradise, ginger, and many more tropical favorites. Beyond the borders, planting beds arranged around a hale, an open-sided thatched-roof pavilion inspired by traditional Hawaiian architecture, will tell the story of canoe plants—useful plants brought to the Islands 1,700 years ago by Polynesian settlers. Vignettes featuring native Hawaiian plants will teach visitors about modern efforts to preserve Hawai‘i’s imperiled flora.
Throughout the 5 month long exhibition there will be plenty of programming including Aloha Nights for after-hour viewings of the Conservatory and Art Gallery on select evenings.