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Stacy L. Kamehiro

Stacy Kamehiro portrait
Associate Professor, History of Art and Visual Culture
Executive Editor, Pacific Arts (the journal of the Pacific Arts Association)
Visual and material cultures of Oceania; Hawaiian visual and material culture; (inter)nationalism; culture contact; colonial cultures; museums, collecting, and exhibition; visual and material cultures of natural history
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Research Interests: 

Stacy L. Kamehiro’s research focuses on colonial Hawaiian visual and material culture. Her book, The Arts of Kingship (2009), offers a detailed account of public art and architecture during the reign of David Kalākaua (1874–1891). Her recent work attends to the politics of art organizations following the overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy; the place of overseas travel in Kalākaua’s efforts to maintain Hawaiʻi’s independence; the roles of Hawaiian featherwork as cultural affirmation, political statement, and historical subject; and US empire and art history. Her current book project, Objects of the Nation: Hawaiʻi at the World Fairs examines collections and exhibitions of Hawaiian material culture and natural history in local and international contexts. She has also published on textiles, architecture, racialized advertising images in nineteenth-century American trade card lithography, and scientific images produced during Pacific voyaging expeditions. 

Porter College, D210
Office Hours: 

Winter 2024: Thursdays, 11:30-12:30 (McHenry 1252) and Fridays, 10:30-11:30 (Zoom). Please sign up here or email me for an appointment.

Mailing Address: 

History of Art and Visual Culture Department

Porter Faculty Services

University of California

1156 High Street

Santa Cruz, CA 95064

Selected Publications: 



The Arts of Kingship: Hawaiian Art and National Culture of the Kalakaua Era. Honolulu: University of Hawai'i Press, 2009. (2nd edition published 2016 by Hawai'i Scholarship Online, Oxford University Press Scholarship Online.)


Articles & Contributions to Books

"Mapping Race or Nation in the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi," in Routledge Companion to Race in Early Modern Artistic, Material, and Visual Production, ed. Christina Lee, Nicholas Jones, and Dominique E. Polanco. NY: Routledge. (Forthcoming.)


"From the Edge through the Vā: Introduction to "Pacific Island Worlds: Oceanic Dis/Positions," Pacific Arts, n.s. 22(1), 2022: 4-19. Co-authored with James Clifford. 


"Home and Belonging: An Interview with Jewel Block," Pacific Arts, n.s. 22(1), 2022: 98-113. Co-authored with Jewel Block.


"SALTWATER/Interconnectivity," Pacific Arts, n.s. 22(1), 2022. Katharine Losi Atafu-Mayo and Giles Peterson with Stacy L. Kamehiro and Maggie Wander. 


"The Kilohana Art League: The Aesthetics of Annexation, 1894-1913," in Imperial Islands: Vision and Experience in the American Empire after 1898edited by Joseph Hartman.  Honolulu: University of Hawai`i Press, 2022. 


"Empire and U.S. Art History from an Oceanic Visual Studies Perspective," Panorama: Journal of the Association of Historians of American Art, 6(1), Spring 2020.


"Worlding the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi: The Art of International Relations," in Hoʻoulu Hawaiʻi: The King Kalākaua Era, ed. Healoha Johnston. Honolulu: Honolulu Museum of Art, 2018.

Recipient of The Hawaiʻi Book Publishers Association 2019 Samuel M. Kamakau Award for Hawaiʻi Book of the Year, and The Hawaiʻi Book Publishers Association 2019 Ka Palapala Poʻokela Award for Excellence in Hawaiian Language, Culture, and History.


"From Trans-Mississippi to Greater America: Hawaiʻi and the Philippines at the Expositions," in The Trans-Mississippi Exposition of 1898: Art, Anthropology and Popular Culture, ed. Wendy Katz.  Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2018.  Co-authored with Danielle Crawford.


Review of Re-Positioning Pacific Arts: Artists, Objects, Histories, ed. Anne E. Allen with Deborah N. Waite (Canon Pyon, U.K.: Sean Kingston Publishing, 2014), in The Contemporary Pacific 28(2), 2016, 508-511.


"Beyond Conservation: Modeling Meaningful Community Collaboration in Hawaiʻi," Pacific Studies 39(3), 2016, 375-393.  Co-authored with Maile Arvin.


"Featherwork in the Hawaiian Monarchy Period, c. 1820-1893," in Royal Hawaiian Featherwork: Nā Hulu Aliʻi, ed. Leah Caldeira, Christina Hellmich, Adrienne L. Kaeppler, Betty Lou Kam, and Roger G. Rose, 80-105.  Honolulu: University of Hawaiʻi Press; San Francisco: Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco in collaboration with the Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum, Honolulu, 2015.

Recipient of The Hawaiʻi Book Publishers Association 2017 Ka Palapala Poʻokela Award for Excellence in Illustrative or Photographic Books, and Finalist for Excellence in Hawaiian Language, Culture, and History. 

Recipient of the R. L. Shep Ethnic Textiles Book Award for 2015, given annually by the Textile Society of America.


"Hawaiʻi at the World Fairs, 1867-1893," World History Connected (University of Illinois Press), 8(3), 2011. (Special Issue, Hawaiʻi in World History, ed.Christine Skwiot.)


“Documents, Specimens, Portraits: Dumoutier’s Oceanic Casts.”  In Fiona Pardington: The Pressure of Sunlight Falling, ed. Kriselle Baker and Elizabeth Rankin. Dunedin, New Zealand: Otago University Press, 2011.


"About the Artist: Jewel Castro," The Contemporary Pacific, 20(2), 2008.


“Hawaiian Quilts: Chiefly Self-Representations in 19th Century Hawai‘i.” In Pragmatic Creativity and Cultural Hybridity: Textiles in and of the Pacific, ed. Phyllis Herda, Ping-Ann Addo, and Heather Young-Leslie. Special volume of Pacific Arts, n.s. 3-5, 2007.


“Iolani Palace: Spaces of Kingship in Late Nineteenth Century Hawai‘i,” Pacific Studies, 29(3-4), 2006.


“Representations of the Chinese in Nineteenth Century American Trade Cards,” Journal of Asian Culture, 17, 1995.



Edited Volumes


Pacific Island Worlds: Oceanic Dis/Positions, a special issue of Pacific Arts, n.s. 22(1), 2022. 


Art and Environment in Oceania, a special issue of Pacific Arts, n.s. 20(1), 2021. Co-edited with Maggie Wander.





Co-curator (with Dr. Ping-Ann Addo), “Cloth and Culture in Oceania: Bark Cloth from Samoa, Tonga, Fiji, and the Marquesas Islands.” UCSC Women’s Center.


Co-director, “Katherine Ng, Book Arts,” Peppers Art Gallery, University of Redlands, Redlands, California


Co-director, “El Nopal: Photomechanical Reproductions by Mexico City and L.A. Artists” (included the work of Daniel J. Martinez, Rubén Ortiz-Torres, John Valadez, Pia Elizondo, John Baldessari, Laureana Toledo, Carlos Somonte, Daniela Rossell, and Francesco Siqueiros), Peppers Art Gallery, University of Redlands, Redlands, California


Co-director, “Image and Text in Asian Art,” Peppers Art Gallery, University of Redlands, Redlands, California


Co-director, “ARTillery art collective” (a Los Angeles-based women’s art collective), Peppers Art Gallery, University of Redlands, Redlands, California


Co-director, “Art As Mediation,” Peppers Art Gallery, University of Redlands, Redlands, California

Selected Presentations: 


"Worlding the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi: King Kalākaua and the Art of International Relations," Pacific Encounters, Templeton Colloquium in Art History, University of California, Davis, 2023.


"Water as Place and Path in Oceanic Visual Culture," keynote for Under(water), the Mary L. Corneille 38th Annual Boston University Graduate Symposium in the History of Art and Architecture, 2022.


"Natural History Collecting in Nineteenth-Century Hawai`i," Occidental College, 2018.


"Science, Religion, and Nineteenth-Century Hawaiian Collections," Making Material Histories program series, Williams College, Williamstown, Massachusetts, 2018.  In conjunction with the exhibition 'The Field is the World': Williams, Hawai`i, and Material Histories in the Making.

"From Trans-Mississippi to Greater America: Hawai'i at the Omaha Expositions, 1898-1899," Nineteenth Century Studies Association Conference, The New and the Novel in the 19th Century, Lincoln, Nebraska, 2016.


"Relgious Practice, Scientific Inquiry, and 19th-Century Hawaiian Collections," Collections in Flux: The Dynamic Spaces and Temporalities of Collection, Clark Library, Los Angeles, 2014. 


"Unsettling Pacific Visions: Complicity and Contestation in Kanaka Maoli (Native Hawaiian) and Sāmoan Contemporary Art, session chair and respondent, College Art Association Annual Conference, Chicago, 2014. 


"ʻIolani Palace," Hawaiʻi Museum Association and Friends of ʻIolani Palace, Honolulu, 2013.


"Natural Theology, Scientific Inquiry, and Natural and Material Culture Collections in the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi, c. 1830-1890," Pacific Arts Association International Symposium, University of British Columbia, 2013. 


"Palaces and Sacred Spaces: ʻIolani Palace, Honolulu, Hawaiʻi," Paul H. and Erika Bourguinon Lecture Series in Art and Anthropology, Ohio State University, 2013. 


"Material Manifestations of Hawaiian Modernity: The Collection and Display of Cultural and Natural History in the Nineteenth Century," 8th International Conference on Easter Island and the Pacific, 2012.


“Hawai’i and the World Fairs, 1867-1893,” College Art Association 98th Annual Conference, 2010.


“Native Hawaiian Collecting and Collections, 1850-1900,” for Session: “Pacific Pasts, Agency, Archives, and Artifacts.” Association for Social Anthropology in Oceania, 2009.


“The Kilohana Art League: Americanizing Hawaiian Art and Culture, 1894-1913,” College Art Association 96th Annual Conference, 2008.


“(Re)Collecting History: The Hawaiian National Museum.” College Art Association 94th Annual Conference, 2006.


“Representations” Panel. Approaches to an Interdisciplinary Pacific Studies Conference, University of California, Santa Cruz, 2004.


“Art Patronage from an Indigenous Hawaiian Perspective: King Kalākaua’s ‘Iolani Palace.” College Art Association 90th Annual Conference, 2002.


“The Aesthetics and Functions of Hawaiian Quilts.” Annual Colloquium on the Arts of Africa, Oceania, and the Native Americas, Pre- and Post-Columbian, 1989.

Teaching Interests: 


Undergraduate Courses

HAVC 70: Introduction to the Visual Cultures of Oceania

HAVC 80: Introduction to the Visual Cultures of Africa, Oceania, and the Native Americas: Colonial Histories and Legacies

HAVC 170: The Art of the Body in Oceania

HAVC 172: Textile Traditions of Oceania

HAVC 185: Art & Community: Arts Professions & Community Engagement

HAVC 190W: Art & Culture Contact in Oceania

HAVC 190X: Art & Identity in Oceania


Graduate Seminars

HAVC 204: Grant Writing, Pedagogy, and Professional Development

HAVC 270: Colonial Cultures of Collecting & Display

HAVC 273: Colonial Borderlands

HAVC 275: Visual Cultures of Travel & Tourism in Oceania

Honors and Awards: 

Selected Honors and Grants

National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship, 2024-25.


Smarthistory Fellow of Pacific Arts, The Center for Public Art History, 2023-24.


Clare M. Wedding Student Enrichment Fellowship, UCSC, 2017-22.


Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Mentoring, UCSC, 2017, 2019, 2021.


Silicon Valley Community Foundation Project Grant, 2018.


University of California Humanities Research Institute Pacific Worlds Multi-Campus Working Group Grant for "Transpacific Dis/Positions: Crosscurrents in Indigenous, Diasporic, and Colonial Histories of Oceania," 2017-18.


National Endowment for the Humanities America's Historical and Cultural Organizations Implementation Grant for 2015-18.  Member of project team.  "Points of Contact: Continuity and Change at ʻIolani Palace," PI: Heather Diamond.


Patricia and Rowland Rebele Endowed Chair in the History of Art and Visual Culture, UCSC, 2014-present.


Arts Research Institute Major Project Grant, UCSC, 2013-15.


National Endowment for the Humanities America's Cultural and Historical Organizations Planning Grant for 2013-14. Member of project team.  "Points of Contact: Continuity and Change at ʻIolani Palace,"  PI: Heather Diamond.


Porter College Distinguished Visiting Artist Grant for Shigeyuki Kihara (lectures and performance), UCSC, 2013. 


Porter College Festival Funds (with Henry Highton) for Salt of the Earth: Exploring the Cultural Diasporas of Surfing (conference), UCSC, 2013. 


Award for Universal Design in Instruction.  Disability Resource Center and Campus Diversity Office, UCSC, 2011.


UCSC Arts Division, Excellence in Mentoring Award, 2009-10.


Book, The Arts of Kingship: Hawaiian Art and National Culture of the Kalakaua Era, nominated for the Hawai’i Book Publishers Association – 2010 Ka Palapala Po‘okela Awards in the categories of “Excellence in Hawaiian Culture” and “Excellence in Nonfiction.”


President’s Research Fellowship in the Humanities. University of California, Office of the President, 2008-09.


Fellow, Association for Social Anthropology in Oceania, 2008.


Arts Research Institute, Major Project Grants, UCSC, 2004-05, 2005-06, and 2010-11.


Porter College Research Fellowships, UCSC, 2005-06, 2006-07, 2009-10, 2011-12.


Associate Fellow, International Quilt Study Center, College of Education and Human Sciences.  University of Nebraska, Lincoln, 2004-16.

Education and Training: 
Ph.D., Art History, University of California, Los Angeles
M.A., Art History, University of California, Los Angeles
B.A., Visual Arts, University of California, San Diego