Hula, poke and artworks: Hawaii summer at New York Botanical Garden
A summer-long feast of Hawaii flora, culture, music and food, along with a rich menu of programming, hula and films.
While Georgia O’Keeffe: Visions of Hawaii at The New York Botanical Garden (NYBG) brings more than 15 paintings back to New York City for the first time since they were exhibited in 1940, this landmark exhibition that runs through October 28, 2018 also offers up a summer-long feast of Hawaiian flora, culture, music and food, along with a rich menu of programming, hula and films. For visitors to New York City, it’s an immersive counterpoint to a day of urban sightseeing, a tropical escape just 20 minutes from the bustle of midtown.
On Aloha Nights, visitors to Georgia O’Keeffe: Visions of Hawaii will enjoy an after-hours viewing of the exhibition in the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory and the Art Gallery. These festive summer evenings, presented by Bank of America, come to life as live music sets the mood for traditional artisan demonstrations of kapa- and lei-making. There will be interactive hula lessons and interactive lei-making demonstrations, where you can craft your own lei pin.
Visitors will experience illuminated installations by contemporary Hawaiian-Chinese sculptor Mark Chai and can unwind with the NYBG specialty cocktail, Passiflora Punch, and Hawaiian fare available for purchase from the STARR Events new Poke Truck. Special ticket required. (Saturdays August 4 & 18, 6:30–10:30 p.m.)
Weekend Performances and Demonstrations
Every weekend, visitors will be whisked away to the Hawaiian Islands with performances, events, and activities that celebrate the diverse cultural traditions of Hawaii. Programs include Hula demonstrations and performances with music, Artisan Demonstrations and the Hawai‘i Past & Present Film Series (on Sundays only), a revolving series of classic and recent movies, environmental documentaries, award- winning shorts and Hawaii as imagined by 1930’s Hollywood. (Saturdays & Sundays, through October 28).
Celebrate Hawaii Weekends
On these select weekends, NYBG, in collaboration with Hawaii Tourism United States, will feature performers, artists, and artisans from Hawai‘i, showcasing the time-honored traditions and unique cultural heritage of the Islands. (July 28 & 29; August 18 & 19; October 27 & 28).
Fashion & Design Weekend, July 28 & 29
Style takes center stage with Hawaiian fashion and design. Visitors can drop in for kapa- making, witness traditional tattoo demonstrations, and get a glimpse into the evolution of fashion in Hawaii and the cultural influences that inspire the contemporary designs of today. Festivities include:
• The History of Hawaiian Tattooing, a presentation and demonstration by master tattoo artist Keone Nunes
• Pop-Up Fashion Shoot with Native Hawaiian Designer Manaola Yap
• Kapa Demonstrations with Micah Kamohoali‘i
• Ali‘i Gown Display, reproductions of Queen Kapi‘olani’s and Queen Lili‘uokalani’s gowns, commissioned by ‘Iolani Palace in Honolulu
• Lei Dress-Making with Bliss Lau
• NYBG Fashion Walk
Music Weekend, August 18 & 19
Music fills the Garden with traditional and contemporary performances—‘ukulele, slack key guitar, hula, and more, including:
• Dance Aloha performs hula throughout the day, while artisan demonstrations take place in the Leon Levy Visitor Center
• A Special Evening Performance at the Saturday, August 18 Aloha Night with Willie K, Led Ka‘apana, Kamakakēhau Fernandez, and Kapono Na‘ili‘ili
• Sunday Afternoon All-Star Jam Session from 1–3 p.m. on the Conservatory Lawn with Willie K, Led Ka‘apana, Kamakakēhau Fernandez, and Kapono Na‘ili‘ili