P•P•O•W is pleased to present Smooth Cayenne, an installation with sculptural and light elements, and a set of photographs by Lynne Yamamoto. This is the artist's second solo exhibition at P•P•O•W.
The one room installation, named for the type of pineapple that had been commonly grown on plantations in Hawaii, uses the fruit as its central motif. For Yamamoto the pineapple is the pivot point around which she develops thematic relationships between colonization and memory.
In one side of the room, Yamamoto has carefully arranged hand-cut cardboard pineapple harvester figures. The small standing figures, lit by oscillating bulbs, cast long shadows that shift with the movement of the lights in the darkened gallery.
In a separate part of the installation, a three-quarter size bust of a fieldworker rests on a pedestal stenciled with the silhouettes of the world's major pineapple producing countries. The raised hands of the bust are breaking the crown off a pineapple. The wall directly behind the bust is wallpapered in gold, with repeated graphics of two structures that mark the pineapple's rise to prominence as the "King of Fruits." These structures are the Dunmore Pineapple, an architectural folly from the 18th century in Scotland, and Honolulu's Dole Pineapple Cannery water tower. The Dole tower was built in 1927 but razed in 1993 when it succumbed to excessive rust, marking an end to an era when pineapple production was a dominant part of the economy of Hawaii.
Four photographs in the gallery's adjoining room revisit a complex of homes where Yamamoto's father grew up in Honolulu. In this simple wooden home light filters through tattered windows, onto an interior covered with years of grime. The photographs lend Yamamoto's exhibition a psychological depth through the intimate representation of an abandoned domestic space.
Lynne Yamamoto was born and raised in Honolulu and currently lives in Northampton, MA. Her work has been exhibited internationally and at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, the Whitney Museum of American Art, PS 1 Contemporary Art Center, and The Contemporary Museum in Honolulu. This installation was produced through a residency at The Mattress Factory in Pittsburgh in 2003.