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September’s Artist in Residence Allison Leialoha Milham gets back to her roots at Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park

The Queen used her music as her form of protest during the time of imprisonment as well as a source of comfort for her and her people during all that turmoil.”
— Allison Leialoha Milham, Singer and Songwriter and NPAF artist in residence
HILO, HAWAI'I, US, September 12, 2018 / -- ISLAND OF HAWAIʻI -- Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park and The National Parks Arts Foundation are proud to announce that Allison Leialoha Milham, a songwriter and book artist and originally from California, but is of Hawaiian descent and has family ties to the islands, will be September’s Artist in Residence near the Park which has recently been the center of national attention because of the many awe-inducing volcanic events of recent months.

Milham will also produce a presentation for visitors and the public at large, on September 21st, 2018 at 10 am, at the Kahuku Unit of the Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park. Directions: Enter the Kahuku unit of Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park on the mauka (uphill) side of Highway 11 near mile marker 70.5. This event is made possible with support from the National Park Service, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Friends of Hawai’i National Park.

MIlham, a native Californian who is currently based in Utah, is a gifted professional musician who has been performing since the age of 18, who also has an MFA degree in book arts from The University of Alabama. She combined these two areas in an unusual project combining research, printing, bookbinding and recordings of the compositions of Hawai’i’s beloved last Queen. Her record and letterpress printed project, Uluhaimalama – Legacies of Lili'uokalani is a careful selection of some of the 200 compositions that Lili'uokalani and some composed while under house arrest and smuggled out. Says Milham, “she was an accomplished musician, poet, and all around incredible and beloved leader. The Arts were really integrated into daily life in Hawai’i, and they had figured out these really sophisticated ways to take care of their needs, so they also had time for art and music. And the Queen used her music as her form of protest during the time of imprisonment as well as a source of comfort for her and her people during all that turmoil.”

Coming from a strong line of creative women, it makes sense that she would eventually find her way back home to this culture and its revitalizing energy. Milham says much of her recent work “is centered on Hawaiian history, culture, and the sustained social and environmental movements happening there. And both my mother and my grandmother were fierce advocates for Hawaiian rights and lifelong creatives. My grandmother, Dallas Keali‘iho‘onei‘āina Mossman, was a theater director and musician and my mother, Mary Alice Kai’ulani Milham was a writer.” MIlham’s own work is held in multiple public collections including Yale University Arts Library and The Library of Congress and is represented by Vamp & Tramp Booksellers and Booklyn in NYC.

About her time at the park, Ms. Milham says that she will focus mostly on songwriting and demo recording: “my goal will be to complete three to four new songs, which will eventually be released as a 7” record with accompanying hand printed and bound artwork. Though my focus will be on the songwriting, I think I’ll also be inspired to do some sketching and mockups of the design while immersed in the beauty of the park and my experience being there.”

For her public event, Ms. Milham plans on playing some of her music as well as the Queen’s, accompanied by the Ukulele and her keyboard. This will take place on the 21st of September at 10 AM at the Kahuku Unit of the National Park. THIS EVENT AS WITH ALL THE NPAF AIR PROGRAMMING is free and open to the public. For more information please call the park at (808) 985-6000.

ABOUT THE ARTIST: Allison Leialoha Milham is a book artist, musician and proprietor of Morning Hour Press. She received her BA in Studio Art from San Francisco State University, CA (2006); and her MFA in Book Arts from the University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa (2012). She’s taught book arts and printmaking at the college level for the past 5 years and is currently serving as the Community Outreach Coordinator in the Book Arts Program at the University of Utah.

NPAF is a 501(c)3 non-profit dedicated to the promotion of the National Parks of the U.S. through creating dynamic opportunities for artworks that are based in our natural and historic heritage. This project is supported by the National Endowment for the Arts, Friends of Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park, and other generous benefactors. All NPAF programs are made possible through the philanthropic support of donors of all sorts ranging from corporate sponsors, small business, and art patrons and citizen-lovers of the Parks. NPAF is always seeking new partners and donors for its wide-ranging artist-in-residence programs.

John Cargill
National Parks Arts Foundation
505 715-6492
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