The Art of Henna

Join Melanie Ooi from Blue Lotus Henna as she gives us the insight history and cultural and customary uses of henna. After the talk, you are welcome to stay for a henna demo.

Henna is a natural dye derived from the leaves of a shrubby bush that originated in the deserts of North Africa, the Middle East and India. It has been used by all of the cultures from these regions in their rituals and festivities for thousands of years. Henna is considered to be a sacred substance and is used as a blessing and to ward off the evil eye (give protection) for those who wear it.

Included with Lan Su membership or admission; no registration is required.

About the Presenter

Melanie Ooi, owner and lead artist of Blue Lotus Henna, has been developing her henna business in Portland since 2006. With a New Zealand Master Mariner for a father and a Chinese artist, author and small business entrepreneur for a mother, she was destined for a life of travel and creativity. Years of living and exploring in SE Asia, Japan, China, India, Morocco and Turkey (to name a few), heavily influenced Melanie's artistic aesthetic. Her passion for all things Indian culminated in her eventually picking up a henna cone. In henna she found the medium that would shape the rest of her life and has dedicated over a decade to this art form. She has been featured on OPB Art Beat and served as an instructor at multiple henna conferences/workshops. Melanie combines the traditions of henna and it's culture with modern trends and special requests to create a truly unique experience for her clients at the Portland Saturday Market and her Henna Parlor in SE Portland.

Ongoing Programs

Lan Su Chinese Garden offers infinite paths to discovery, whether you are a visitor simply taking in the beauty of the garden for the first  time, or a member who comes back day after day to sip tea in the Teahouse. Most activities are included with your purchase of membership or admission. Visitors can join in an instructor-led tai chi session, take a guided tour of the garden with a staff horticulturalist, enjoy live music performances at the Teahouse, or learn to play Chinese games like mahjong and wei chi.

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Plant Guide

Discover what's currently in bloom at Lan Su by picking up a copy of Lan Su's most recent Bloom Guide at the door or download your copy now. Featuring 16 of the most fragrant or most beautiful plants in the garden, the Plant Guide is your window into Lan Su's horticultural landscape.

Plant Guides by Season:

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Summer Plant Guide — Download your copy now (PDF, 542 KB) »