Miya Hannan

Gallery: Installations

Trapped Histories

Bone ash, epoxy resin, concrete, phone books, tree branches; approx. 20 x 20 x 15 feet; 2013.

trapped histories
trapped histories Thumb1
trapped histories Thumb2
trapped histories Thumb3
trapped histories Thumb4
trapped histories Thumb5

These sculptures were created as a part of a body of work, Layers and Missing Links. It shows the layers and linkages of human history that evolved with nature and is etched into it. The amber colored epoxy pieces contain twisted phone books. White pieces are hardened bone ash.


Bone ash, digital printing on paper, plaster, fabric; 12 x 16 x 3.5 feet; 2010.


This installation, which mimics a Japanese ritual, implies “linkages” of individual human beings from past to future, of layers of human histories, of endings and new beginnings, and of humans and nature. In the installation, twisted paper is sewed into bedsheets that are laid over the landscape of human remains. These twisted papers contain multitudes of names collected from phone books. I use fabric and thin Japanese paper--materials that recall the temporality and fragility of physical bodies. For this work, I chose white bedsheets, which remind me of hospital beds, as the place human life starts and ends.


Digital printing on paper, plaster, fabric, bone ash; each sculpture approx. 18 x 12 x 15 inches; 2010.


This installation is a collection of sculptures, "Season 1 - 7." Like "Transience" above, it implies "linkages," as well as the cycles of nature and of human beings. Each sculpture consists of shapes of vertebrae and the pelvis. It is covered with white fabric, and twisted phone book pages go in and out though the fabric. (For more images of the individual sculptures, please go to Sculpture page.)


Mixed media on Japanese paper and cheese cloth, styrene form, paper mache, bone ash, porcelain; 12 x 16 x 16 feet as a whole installtion; 2007.


The idea of this installation is taken form an Asian funeral ritual. The white powder on the floor is bone ash, each pile of which has an axis bone sitting on it. The axis is the second cervical vertebra. It, along with the atlas (the first cervical vertebra), creates a pivot type of joint which allows the head to turn. In Japan, the axis is called “nodobotoke,” which means “the Buddha in the throat,” because the shape of it looks like the seated Buddha. It is, therefore, treated with greater respect when the dead are cremated. After cremation, family members pick up the remains using chopsticks.The axis is picked up last by the person closest to the dead one. It is then laid in a special place separately from the rest of the ashes.

One or Millions ?

Mixed media on fabric, plasrer; 12 x 16 x 16 feet as a whole installation; 2006.

one or millions ?
one or millions ?Thumb1
one or millions ?Thumb2
one or millions ?Thumb3
one or millions ?Thumb4
one or millions ?Thumb5

This installation is made from a long fabric on which a continuous chain of vertebrae is drawn. The fabric connects shapes of human bodies that are molded from my own body.

Evolutionary Momentum

Mixed media on Japanese paper, bone ash; 105 x 320 x 12 inches; 2007.

Evolutionary Momentum
Evolutionary Momentum Thumb1
Evolutionary Momentum Thumb2
Evolutionary Momentum Thumb3

The white piles are bone ash connected with arches of vertebrae drawn on thin Japanese paper. The pieces of thin paper are hung from the top so that they move with air currents.