PIKO: Pacific Islander Contemporary Art Exhibit to Open January at PIEAM

PIKO1The Pacific Island Ethnic Art Museum (PIEAM) presents "PIKO: Pacific Islander Contemporary Art," a groundbreaking exhibit to be shown January 10 through July 26, 2015. While the art of contemporary Pacific Islanders is often shown in exhibitions in Hawaii and the Pacific, their works are rarely shown in California. PIKO will provide Long Beach and all visitors with this critical introduction to this significant body of work. The opening reception is on Saturday, January 10 at 4:00PM and will feature an artists' panel and celebrations that are open to the public.

The exhibit will examine the current state of contemporary art by Pacific Islanders in the United States and United States Territories. Featured works will include art by Noelani Arists (Hawaiian), Micki Davis (Chamorro), Chuck Feesago (Samoan), Sia Figiel (Samoan), Moana Nepia (Maori), Carl Pao (Hawaiian), Dan Taulapapa McMullin (Samoan) and Lorene Taurerewa (Samoan). Pictured to the left is Carl Pao's Ki'i Pohaku #7 of the Remasculation Series. 

Dan Taulapapa McMullin is not only an artistic contributer, but also served as the exhibit's guest curator. McMullin is a painter and a poet whose practice is heavily influenced by his loved ones, island people, dancers, landscapes and social issues. He uses text, technology, paint, light and other mixed media to create works influenced by Samoan culture that can translate in an English-speaking world. He works in Hudson, New York and was recently commissioned by the Bishop Museum of Honolulu and was an artist-in-residence at the De Young Museum and the University of the South Pacific. He has also authored a book of poetry, entitled Coconut Milk.

"PIKO" refers to the attitude of the indigenous aesthetic and the renewal of Pacific Islander artistic practices in response to colonial appropriation of indigenous subjectivity. McMullin said in a press statement, "Evident in their works is a tendency based not just on the art historical recuperation of Pacific Islander subjectivity, but on maintaining an effective relationship between indigenous works and our surrounding environment."

PIKOPIEAM works to incorporate the diverse cultures of the Pacific Islands through a permanent collection, educational programs, rotating exhibits and living arts. The museum is located at 695 Alamitos Ave. The museum is open Wednesday through Sunday, 11:00AM to 5:00PM. Admission is free for museum members, $5 general admission, $3 for students and seniors with an ID, and is free for children under 12. Free museum parking is located at 644 Alamitos Ave. or you can use MOLAA's lot at 628 Alamitos Ave. For more information visit the website here or call (562) 216-4170.


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