As part of The Armory Show and Tell artist Tracy Nakayama presented:

Balance and Harmony through Hawaiian Floral Art

The artist will demonstrate how to construct traditional Hawaiian haku leis. Participants will construct their own headpieces using a variety of materials such as fresh and dried flowers, pods, and shells. The artist will discuss how floral arts like ikebana and leis have influenced her work. If time permits, participants will make a brush and ink drawing of their finished leis.

Tracy Nakayama was born in Honolulu, Hawaii. She earned a BFA from California College of Arts and Crafts in 1996 while studying with Bay Area printmakers Jack Ford and Ken Rignall and Beat poet Michael McClure; she received an MFA from the School of Visual Arts in 1998. Her early works, sepia-toned ink drawings based on imagery derived from 1970s Playgirl magazines and lifestyle advertising, captured the diminishing glow of an era as the last bit of its stash went up in smoke. Their superficial prettiness suggests a resentment toward the psychological baggage of a self-satisfied generation that got to have its cake and eat it too, while also expressing a sincere longing for the emotional, sexual, and material satisfaction being advertised – themes that she continues to explore in her work. Using imagery derived from vintage pornographic sources, Nakayama’s work seeks to subvert the male gaze by drawing focus to the artist’s hand. In recent years, her work has come to focus on portraiture and figures in landscape that comment on the history of painting. She has exhibited extensively in galleries and museums in the US, Europe, Japan, and Scandinavia. Her work is also part of the Judith Rothschild Contemporary Drawing Collection in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art, New York.

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