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or we build an army
and fight together?

In 2019, Taiwanese artist Szu-Ni Wen and I initiated a conversation on solidarity in the context of the territorial issues in the South China Sea between the Philippines, Taiwan, and Mainland China. Our dialogue initially spanned our two homelands but has since expanded to the Yaeyama archipelago through the latest project "Bathing in the Currents" with Ma Umi Residencies in Ishigaki, Japan. Our work HOW TO HEAL, a pair of videos documenting the first phase of our collaboration was selected by Affect and Colonialism Web Lab in Berlin and can be viewed in full on their website. We will continue to work later this year in the US and the following year in Kaohsiung, Taiwan with Pier 2 Residencies.

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Hapi: Lost World

In the upheaval of my relocation to New York, and the consequent addition of "immigrant" into my identity, I turn towards myth and fantasy to ruminate anew on Gaugin’s colossal questions: What are we? Where do we come from? Where are we going? In my imagination, I encounter the Hapi: an ancient pan-Filipino pan-Asian queer-inclusive sex-positive tribe. They live as sea nomads along the coastlines of the Philippines. They embody the Filipino of both my dreams and my reality—my hopes for and my disappointments of native country, native habitat, and provenance. Hapi: Lost World is a documentary as live performance about a lost people at odds with the anthropocene. The newborn alter-persona Ba Ba Bu Yas Yas, high shaman of the Hapi, is its focal subject.

The work was conceived during the residency Community of Practice: Cool Down hosted by PACT Zollverein (Essen) and Hellerau (Dresden) through the support of the Alliance of Production Houses in Germany. An initial iteration was presented in Pangasinan, Philippines for Anakbanwa Creative Residencies in November 2023.

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