DISplace, by Guest Curators Lehuauakea and Kanani Miyamoto, Celebrates Hawaiian Diaspora in the Pacific Northwest

Opening Night with TEXT

Exhibition site goes live: Thursday, November 12th, 2020 at 12 noon PST

Opening Event on Zoom: Thursday, November 12th, 2020 from 5:30-7pm PST

Reserve your free ticket at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/displace-exhibition-opening-night-tickets-127494626861

Curator’s talk: Friday, December 4 from 6-7 pm PST

“Much of Hawaiian history in the Pacific Northwest and the stories of these families have been glossed over or omitted altogether in the past,” say Lehuauakea and Miyamoto. “DISplace hopes to address these gaps in our collective history and share these ongoing stories, telling them with our own voices.”

DISplace shines light on the widely unknown connection between Hawai‘i, the Pacific Northwest, and the communities that continue to flow between these two regions. As far back as 1787, people coming from and through the Hawaiian Islands to what’s currently considered the Pacific Northwest have made important contributions to culture and industry throughout the region. In keeping with the museum’s approach of providing a platform for culturally embedded storytelling, Guest Curators Lehuauakea (they/them) and Kanani Miyamoto (she/her) are themselves a part of this living history: both are mixed-Native Hawaiian, have family roots in Hawaiʻi and are now based in Portland, OR.

Miyamoto and Lehuauakea have created a multi-faceted online exhibition that combines deep historical research with contemporary artworks and personal stories sourced directly from today’s regional communities. Similarly to Five Oaks Museum’s inaugural guest-curated exhibition, This IS Kalapuyan Land curated by Steph Littlebird Fogel, the 2020-2021 School Year Guest Curator duo have infused their exhibition with an emphasis on the diversity, excellence, and resilience of their community.


Featuring fine art, traditional practices, and personal narratives from:

Forrest McGarvey

George Okuhara

Keola Cayabyab

Piʻilani Yamanoha

Palmarin Merges

Nica Aquino

Kia Takamori-Tihada

Kevin Matthew Kaunualiʻi Kiesel

Kaleiʻokalani Matsui

Tehya Kealoha

Shyla Kaninau Villanueva

Christopher Lum

Emily Miller

John P. & Sean E. / Shaka Funk Design Co.

Suzette Cuizon and Nev Faull

Chris Paterson

The opening event, on November 12th, 2020 from 5:30-7pm PST, will be a virtual celebration and chance to hear more from the curators, storytellers, and artists themselves. This special event will also feature:

Performances from Hālau Ka Lei Haliʻa O Ka Lokelani, Kanohana Band: featuring K-Boy and Miss Killa, and Family stories from Kate Roland (Naukana)

And for the full experience, share a meal with Lehuauakea and Miyamoto by picking up some delicious food from one of the regions 80+ Hawaiian and Island Style food vendors, such as event sponsor 808Grinds!

The online exhibition will be complemented by public programs and learning resources throughout the academic year. Next up is the Curators’ Talk, on Friday, December 4 from 6-7 pm PST, where the duo will walk you through the exhibition, sharing their process and behind-the-scenes stories. Look out for exhibition participants doing takeovers of the museum’s social media platforms, as well as events including community partners APANO, Mobile Projection Unit, and more!

Furthermore, Lehuauakea is launching a brand new community uplift project in tandem with DISplace. The Pasifika Action Award (PAA) advances cultural resiliency in Pasifika diasporic communities by granting financial assistance to graduating high school students to continue career and lifetime goals connected to their culture. Whether it be through a traditional college route or not, this award aims to keep recipients’ momentum going in a time of uncertainty and encourage younger generations to honor their heritage and community through the lives they lead. The first ever Pasifika Action Awards ceremony will be held in the spring of 2021, at the end of this academic year.

Along with the award, Lehuauakea is creating a print magazine called Kūpa‘a, and the first issue will be closely related to the content of the DISplace exhibition. They are offering a special discount on pre-orders for that publication to Five Oaks Museum members! Pre-order begins with the opening on November 12. Existing members and any new members who join before the November 12th opening event will also receive an additional eight months free membership. Follow @kupaa_magazine on Instagram or any of the museum’s channels for updates on the award and magazine.

DISplace is sponsored by 808Grinds, Native Arts and Cultures Foundation, Hula Halau ‘Ohana Holo’oko’a, and KIAKO Foundation, with additional funding from The Collins Foundation & the James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation. Sponsorship opportunities are still available to support this important work.

Lehuauakea (they/them) is a mixed-Native Hawaiian interdisciplinary artist from Pāpaʻikou on Moku O Keawe, the Big Island of Hawaiʻi. Lehua’s Kānaka Maoli family descends from several lineages connected to Maui, Kauaʻi, Kohala, and Hāmākua where their family resides to this day.

They have participated in several solo and group shows around the Pacific Ocean. Most recently these include ‘A Gift, A Breath’ at Alice Gallery in Seattle, ‘Until We Meet Again’ at Blackfish Gallery in Portland, and ‘He Hae Hōʻailona Ia’ at Aupuni Space in Honolulu. Through a range of craft-based media, their practice serves as a means of reflection on cultural and biological ecologies, spectrums of identity, and what it means to build a life rooted in Indigenous sustainability and traditional practices. With a particular focus on the labor-intensive making of ʻohe kāpala, kapa cloth, and natural pigments, Lehua is able to breathe new life into patterns and customs practiced for generations. Through these acts of resilience that help forge deeper relationships with ʻāina, this mode of Indigenous storytelling is carried well into the future.

The artist is currently based between Portland and Pāpaʻikou after earning their Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Painting with a minor in Art + Ecology at Pacific Northwest College of Art.

Kanani Miyamoto (she/her) holds an MFA in Print Media from the Pacific Northwest College of Art, and a bachelor’s degree in Art Practices from Portland State University. Her work has shown in Hawai`i, Oregon and Washington. She is originally from Honolulu, Hawai‘i and is currently living in Portland, Oregon.

Miyamoto is a passionate printmaker and educator. Her art practice includes non-traditional printmaking, in the form of large scale mixed media original prints, sculpture, installation, and animation. Her work is inspired by her personal experiences as an individual of mixed heritage as well as life in Honolulu. Issues of cultural and personal identity have been a major theme in her work.

Additionally, Miyamoto loves collaborations of all kinds and is supportive of community based art. She is an advocate for art education, the integration of art in public schools and across academic disciplines. She teaches with Pacific University, Portland Community College, Young Audiences, The Right Brain Initiative and NW Noggin’s STEAM program. Miyamoto believes arts based learning fosters productive, divergent thinkers and that our society could always use more imagination and creativity.


Five Oaks Museum: Moving History Forward

Five Oaks Museum is a gathering place of vibrant art, culture and storytelling — a resource for all who are curious about the world around us. Since our founding in 1956 as the Washington County Historical Society, we’ve worked to preserve the artifacts and narratives that define the Tualatin Valley’s unique place in the world. By collaborating with others to explore how art, culture and history shape the past and influence the future, we help visitors connect to a collective history. Here, everyone is part of the story.

Five Oaks Museum’s building is closed to the public due to COVID-19. Experience our exhibitions and more online at www.fiveoaksmuseum.org