Fiji: Art & Life in the Pacific
(Los Angeles—November 20, 2019) The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) is pleased to present Fiji: Art & Life in the Pacific, the first substantial project on the art of Fiji to be mounted in the U.S. The exhibition features over 280 artworks drawn from major international collections, including Fiji Museum, the British Museum, the Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology (Cambridge), the Smithsonian, and distinguished private collections. The exhibition includes figurative sculpture, ritual kava bowls, breastplates of pearl shell and whale ivory, large-scale barkcloths, small portable temples, weapons, and European watercolors and paintings. Additionally, Fiji: Art & Life in the Pacific showcases historical photographs from LACMA’s recently acquired Blackburn Collection, as well as a newly commissioned 26-foot double-hulled sailing canoe (drua) constructed in Fiji using traditional materials and techniques.
Fiji: Art & Life in the Pacific was organized and curated by Professor Steven Hooper, Dr. Karen Jacobs, and Ms. Katrina Igglesden at the Sainsbury Centre in Norwich, England, where it was on view October 15, 2016–February 12, 2017. The exhibition has been reformatted for the presentation at LACMA, with additional major loans from U.S. collections. The exhibition at LACMA is curated by Nancy Thomas, senior deputy director, art administration and collections at LACMA, with support from the organizing curators.