Celebrating environmental art

LIHUE — National Tropical Botanical Garden announced tickets are on sale for a preview party of environmental art created by renowned artist Patrick Dougherty.

The meet-the-artist reception will offer live music by the Kauai Community College Jazz Band and an assortment of wine, beverages and pupus by the Greenery Café. The event, which runs from 4 to 6:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 21, begins with a scenic ride from the Southshore Visitors Center into the Lawai Valley. It offers a guests a chance to experience the new Biodiversity Trail before journeying deeper into the McBryde Garden.

The preview wraps up three weeks of Dougherty’s time at NTBG working with staff and volunteers from the Kauai community. Using plant materials gathered from the garden and scaffolding to erect the tall sculpture, Dougherty created a one-of-a-kind artistic piece that will naturally decompose over time.

Space is limited. The $25 tickets are being sold in advance online at ntbg.brownpapertickets.com or at the Visitors Center Gift Shop. Garden members are invited to receive a discount by purchasing their tickets directly from NTBG’s Development Office at 332-7324, ext. 211.

Dougherty has spent more than three decades creating 250 “stickwork” sculptures across North America and around the world from Italy, France and Ireland to Australia, Japan and South Korea. He has previously made sculptures on Oahu and Maui but the NTBG installation is his first on Kauai.

These sculptures, sometimes likened to three-dimensional pencil drawings, evoke a sense of the familiar yet feel mythical and otherworldly, expressing the movement of water, wind and air through surfaces built of meticulously arranged sticks and branches.

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