Georgia O’Keeffe at the New York Botanical Garden? Fire Up Your Instagram!

NYBG celebrates the American master in an exhibition that must be seen—and smelled.

Photo by Robert Benson

There are not many ways to make the sprawling, verdant New York Botanical Garden even more lush. A heavy rain, perhaps. Or the new portrait of Barack Obama.

But the surest way to do it would be to exhibit 20 pieces by the deeply sensual American artist Georgia O’Keeffe, created during a nine-week Hawaiian adventure in 1939. You don’t need to be an O’Keeffe scholar to know that work done by her in Hawaii would yield lushly exploding images that would absolutely kill on Instagram. So, yeah, now would be a good time to limber up your pic-taking thumbs. 

That’s because NYBG has collected these pieces to show publicly for the first time in an exhibition called “Georgia O’Keeffe: Visions of Hawai‘i.” And your strolling experience will be further enhanced by a fragrant, companion show of Hawaiian flora, including hibiscus, frangipani, bougainvillea, and bird-of-paradise. Too bad there’s no Instagram for smells. (Note to any techies out there: We are available to develop this billion-dollar idea.) 


Georgia O'Keeffe Hawaii
 Hibiscus With Plumeria, 1939, by Georgia O’Keeffe

If you need help deciding when to step into this eye-popping paradise, try one of the Celebrate Hawai’i Weekends (May 19 and 20, July 28 and 29, August 18 and 19), which will showcase Hawaiian culture beloved to the islands: slack-key guitar music and opera, the art of hand-tapping, tattooing, and traditional snacks and sips. 

Georgia O'Keeffe Hawaii
Heliconia’s Crab’s Claw Ginger, 1939, by Georgia O’Keeffe

Speaking of snacks: What modern Hawaiian celebration would be complete without a poke bowl? Grab yours on select steamy Saturday evenings throughout summer Aloha Nights, after-hours events with live music, lei-making lessons, and more. Specialty tropical cocktails for the adults and poke for kahunas of all ages will flow freely. 

Why You Should Go: Deepen your appreciation for the otherworldly art of O’Keeffe while submerged in a rich Hawaiian cultural celebration. And did we mention the tropical cocktails? Mahalo, NYBG!

“Georgia OKeeffe: Visions of Hawaii”
New York Botanical Garden
2900 Southern Boulevard, Bronx
Saturday, May 19–Sunday, October 28

Bask in Georgia O’Keeffe’s floras while exploring the Bronx. Let us plan the ideal spring day for you.