The breathtaking art of the South Pacific is as close as Long Beach, at the new Pacific Island Ethnic Art Museum (PieAM), which opened June 12 in Long Beach, near the Museum of Latin American Art (MoLAA).
Like entering an island village, the museum features a traditionally peaked building and lush sculpture garden with native South Pacific plants.
A mural (by Long Beach native Art Mortimer) recreates a traditional Men’s House from the Island of Yap on the building’s exterior; while inside sculptures, textiles, paintings, wooden tools, jewelry and carvings from across the Pacific showcase the arts of the Marshall, Samoa, Guam, Fiji and Tongan islands.
Nationalities represented include Micronesian, Hawaiian, Ni-Vanuatu, Maori, Polynesian, Melanesian, Palauan, and the I-Kiribati.
Permanent and rotating exhibits as well as continually commissioned new works will be enhanced with traditional dance performances, interactive cultural demonstrations and learning programs.
PieAM was created by the late Dr. Robert Gumbiner, who died in January 2009, and includes his personal collection of Pacific Island ethnic art.
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