Sita Kuratomi Bhaumik
Curated Exhibition

Food Worlds

The Philippines and its diaspora are a culinary landscape. A global archipelago of scent, sight, sizzle, and spice. An empire of eating memories. Left: Sita Kuratomi Bhaumik, “To Curry Favor,” 2011.

Explore
Topic

Colonial & Imperial Legacies

Explore works like Melissa R. Sipin's video To My Unknown Daughter (2016).

Artist Spotlight

Do Ho Suh

Suh's installations challenge conventional notions of scale.

Social Media

CA+T on Facebook

Check out our Facebook page! 

curated exhibition

Talking Bodies

CA+T commissioned six Filipino American and Asian American emerging poets and writers to create an audiovisual document of them reading their work.
 
We asked our participants the broad question, How do poets and writers write, think, and visualize bodies, the body, their body? The answers to this question—addressing colonialism, gender, geography, the everyday, the unknown and more—become the foundation for Talking Bodies. As you will see, each video captures the creativity of the poets and writers and pushes them to reconcile “voice” and “body” as they focus on the digital screen. 
 
Talking Bodies means literally and doubly.  The contributors are “talking bodies”—bodies who speak—as they record themselves digitally.  And Talking Bodies also “talks [about] bodies.” As these authors write about bodies, they connect theirs to others and to the global and historical processes that have constituted these bodies. These bodies are corporeal, psychic, and epistemic. 
 
This virtual exhibition captures writers as visual artists, especially in the ways they produce themselves speaking their work for the digital screen. 
 
Contributors’ works will be published in staggered waves from early June to early July 2016, after which the whole exhibition will be archived permanently on CA+T’s website.
 
Co-curated by Jan Christian Bernabe and Alex Ratanapratum.
 
Contributors include Kimberly Alidio, Jason Bayan, Rachelle Cruz, Kenji C. Liu, Angela Peñaredondo, and Melissa R. Sipin 
 
Special thanks to the Andy Warhol Foundation and the California Institute of Contemporary Arts for fiscal support.
 
Summer 2016
 

To My Unknown Daughter

Melissa R. Sipin

2016 Digital video recording Duration: 18m 46s Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Melissa R. Sipin

b. 1988
image description
  • See All Works
  • facebook
  • visit website

Melissa R. Sipin is a writer from Carson, CA. She won Glimmer Train's Fiction Open and the Washington Square Review's Flash Fiction Prize. She co-edited Kuwento: Lost Things, an anthology on Philippine myths (Carayan Press 2014), and her work is in Glimmer Train, Guernica, Washington Square Review, PEN/Guernica Flash Series, VIDA: Women in Literary Arts, Eleven Eleven, and Hyphen Magazine, among others. Cofounder of TAYO Literary Magazine, her fiction has won scholarships/fellowships from Kundiman, VONA/Voices Conference, Sewanee Writers' Conference, and was shortlisted for the David Wong Fellowship at the University of East Anglia. As the Poets & Writers McCrindle Fellow in Los Angeles, she is hard at work on a short story collection and novel. More at: msipin.com.

Here is an essay I wrote about the Pinay body: “To My Unknown Daughter,” which was published in Glimmer Train back in 2014. I thought reading this essay for CA+T’s “Talking Bodies” exhibit was appropriate but also star-aligning, because I wanted to do something more with it, something visual, something multimedia. I decided against using footage of me reading this essay, or any footage of me really, and instead used this vintage, archival footage of my family in Mandaluyong, Metro Manila, Philippines, in 1967, during the Marcos regime. There’s so much lovely irony in this archival, fragmentary footage ... My father's in there with his older brothers; him the youngest, the most hungry. He’s about five years old, such a ripe and innocent age, a persona of my father I’ve never met or seen before, and he is seen riding a bike or longing for his eldest brother, my Uncle Dennis, the chosen patriarch of my family after my grandfather died. The men first seen in the beginning, in the first clip, is my Uncle Geony and my Uncle Eddie—both of whom fled to the East Coast right around the time my grandfather passed, almost in defiance, in irrelevance to my Uncle Dennis. All the kids dancing are my familia—my aunts, my uncles, my cousins, my bloodline.

Let me go deeper, and tell you the backstory behind the footage: my white uncle, who filmed this footage, met my Auntie Lodie near Clark Air Base (she was a prostitute), and they married; before he left for America (and subsequently took her, which allowed my whole family to immigrate), he would visit the family home in Manila and bring gifts, like this camera. In this essay, I talk a bit about how this complication, this nuance, this chance meeting between my white uncle and prostitute aunt is a consequence of U.S. Imperialism, and how all of this—this kind of colonial inheritance—affects the ways I write about the Pinay body. Although I wanted to film new material, these archival, old family videos made by my white uncle—who, ironically, is the only one archiving and recording our family histories, our family tree, and salvaging mementos from our past—obsessed me. This footage always damages me in a slow, pregnant way; it marks the infancy of my familia, it marks the moment when we were once together, before we broke apart. I decided to loop the video in hopes of producing a kind of fragmentary remembrance.

 

location

X
  • Born: Torrance, CA
  • Based: Los Angeles, CA, USA

comments

X

To My Unknown Daughter (screen capture)

Melissa R. Sipin

2016 Screen capture of video performance Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Melissa R. Sipin

b. 1988
image description
  • See All Works
  • facebook
  • visit website

Melissa R. Sipin is a writer from Carson, CA. She won Glimmer Train's Fiction Open and the Washington Square Review's Flash Fiction Prize. She co-edited Kuwento: Lost Things, an anthology on Philippine myths (Carayan Press 2014), and her work is in Glimmer Train, Guernica, Washington Square Review, PEN/Guernica Flash Series, VIDA: Women in Literary Arts, Eleven Eleven, and Hyphen Magazine, among others. Cofounder of TAYO Literary Magazine, her fiction has won scholarships/fellowships from Kundiman, VONA/Voices Conference, Sewanee Writers' Conference, and was shortlisted for the David Wong Fellowship at the University of East Anglia. As the Poets & Writers McCrindle Fellow in Los Angeles, she is hard at work on a short story collection and novel. More at: msipin.com.

Here is an essay I wrote about the Pinay body: “To My Unknown Daughter,” which was published in Glimmer Train back in 2014. I thought reading this essay for CA+T’s “Talking Bodies” exhibit was appropriate but also star-aligning, because I wanted to do something more with it, something visual, something multimedia. I decided against using footage of me reading this essay, or any footage of me really, and instead used this vintage, archival footage of my family in Mandaluyong, Metro Manila, Philippines, in 1967, during the Marcos regime. There’s so much lovely irony in this archival, fragmentary footage ... My father's in there with his older brothers; him the youngest, the most hungry. He’s about five years old, such a ripe and innocent age, a persona of my father I’ve never met or seen before, and he is seen riding a bike or longing for his eldest brother, my Uncle Dennis, the chosen patriarch of my family after my grandfather died. The men first seen in the beginning, in the first clip, is my Uncle Geony and my Uncle Eddie—both of whom fled to the East Coast right around the time my grandfather passed, almost in defiance, in irrelevance to my Uncle Dennis. All the kids dancing are my familia—my aunts, my uncles, my cousins, my bloodline.

Let me go deeper, and tell you the backstory behind the footage: my white uncle, who filmed this footage, met my Auntie Lodie near Clark Air Base (she was a prostitute), and they married; before he left for America (and subsequently took her, which allowed my whole family to immigrate), he would visit the family home in Manila and bring gifts, like this camera. In this essay, I talk a bit about how this complication, this nuance, this chance meeting between my white uncle and prostitute aunt is a consequence of U.S. Imperialism, and how all of this—this kind of colonial inheritance—affects the ways I write about the Pinay body. Although I wanted to film new material, these archival, old family videos made by my white uncle—who, ironically, is the only one archiving and recording our family histories, our family tree, and salvaging mementos from our past—obsessed me. This footage always damages me in a slow, pregnant way; it marks the infancy of my familia, it marks the moment when we were once together, before we broke apart. I decided to loop the video in hopes of producing a kind of fragmentary remembrance.

 

location

X
  • Born: Torrance, CA
  • Based: Los Angeles, CA, USA

comments

X

You Make a Half of Me

Kenji C. Liu

2016 Digital video recording Duration: 1m 29s Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Kenji C. Liu

b. 1977

Born in Japan to a Japanese mother and Taiwanese father, the laws at the time excluded me from Japanese citizenship. Because of my father, I was an alien and a ward of the Republic of China, a place I had never seen. Ironic, considering that my father was born into the Japanese Empire. This legal twist, among several others I have explored in my poetry collection Map of an Onion, is a major crux in my creative and scholarly practice.

I am interested in the documents of the state, or what documentation does or does not permit. By document I mean anything from citizenship or residence papers to federal laws or medical examinations. How does a document, or a series of documents, create a certain kind of person, a certain kind of body?

Simultaneously, my experiential practice as a vipassana meditator provides a different yet compatible perspective on personhood and embodiment—that ultimately, what we take to be natural or solid are neither. That what we consider to be a solid self is an amalgamated series of reactions to our experiences.

My current work is the decolonial exploration of an intersection—between the formation of a legal subject (by legal I don’t mean a person given legitimacy through law, but rather a type of person defined and created by law, whether citizen, resident, alien, undocumented, gender, race, etc.) and the formation of our sense of solid self, forged through very personal yet also social, political, economic experiences.

In this work I draw heavily on post-structural and post-colonial scholarship, attempting to sense into biopolitics and governmentality as they are deployed, as we deploy them, as deployment occurs. Equally important are Theravadan Buddhist suttas explicating the ways we form a sense of self (dependent origination or paticcasamuppada), the Four Noble Truths, and the cessation of dukkha. Together, these bodies of thought provide a view into not only how the self is made, but also how it can be remade or unmade—an essential insight for the practice of decolonization.

My poetry collection Map of an Onion is national winner of the 2015 Hillary Gravendyk Poetry Prize. My poetry is in many places, including American Poetry Review, Action Yes!, Split This Rock’s poem of the week series, four anthologies, and a chapbook, You Left Without Your Shoes. I have received fellowships from Kundiman, VONA/Voices, Djerassi, and the Community of Writers, and hold an MA in Cultural Anthropology and Social Transformation.

Photo credit: Margarita Corporan

 

location

X
  • Born: Kyoto, Japan
  • Based: Los Angeles, CA, USA
  • Also Based in: Oakland, CA, USA

comments

X

You Make a Half of Me (screen capture)

Kenji C. Liu

2016 Screen capture of video performance Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Kenji C. Liu

b. 1977

Born in Japan to a Japanese mother and Taiwanese father, the laws at the time excluded me from Japanese citizenship. Because of my father, I was an alien and a ward of the Republic of China, a place I had never seen. Ironic, considering that my father was born into the Japanese Empire. This legal twist, among several others I have explored in my poetry collection Map of an Onion, is a major crux in my creative and scholarly practice.

I am interested in the documents of the state, or what documentation does or does not permit. By document I mean anything from citizenship or residence papers to federal laws or medical examinations. How does a document, or a series of documents, create a certain kind of person, a certain kind of body?

Simultaneously, my experiential practice as a vipassana meditator provides a different yet compatible perspective on personhood and embodiment—that ultimately, what we take to be natural or solid are neither. That what we consider to be a solid self is an amalgamated series of reactions to our experiences.

My current work is the decolonial exploration of an intersection—between the formation of a legal subject (by legal I don’t mean a person given legitimacy through law, but rather a type of person defined and created by law, whether citizen, resident, alien, undocumented, gender, race, etc.) and the formation of our sense of solid self, forged through very personal yet also social, political, economic experiences.

In this work I draw heavily on post-structural and post-colonial scholarship, attempting to sense into biopolitics and governmentality as they are deployed, as we deploy them, as deployment occurs. Equally important are Theravadan Buddhist suttas explicating the ways we form a sense of self (dependent origination or paticcasamuppada), the Four Noble Truths, and the cessation of dukkha. Together, these bodies of thought provide a view into not only how the self is made, but also how it can be remade or unmade—an essential insight for the practice of decolonization.

My poetry collection Map of an Onion is national winner of the 2015 Hillary Gravendyk Poetry Prize. My poetry is in many places, including American Poetry Review, Action Yes!, Split This Rock’s poem of the week series, four anthologies, and a chapbook, You Left Without Your Shoes. I have received fellowships from Kundiman, VONA/Voices, Djerassi, and the Community of Writers, and hold an MA in Cultural Anthropology and Social Transformation.

Photo credit: Margarita Corporan

 

location

X
  • Born: Kyoto, Japan
  • Based: Los Angeles, CA, USA
  • Also Based in: Oakland, CA, USA

comments

X

Eve's Mistress

Angela Peñaredondo

2016 Digital video recording Duration: 1m 11s Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Angela Peñaredondo

b. 1979

Born in Iloilo City, Philippines, Angela Peñaredondo is a Pilipinx poet and artist (on other days, she identifies as a usual ghost, subdued comet, or part-time animal). Her first full-length book, All Things Lose Thousands of Times (Inlandia Institute, 2016) is the winner of the Hillary Gravendyk Poetry Prize. She is the author of a chapbook, Maroon (Jamii Publications, 2015). Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in AAWW’s The Margins, Four Way Review, Cream City Review, Southern Humanities Review, South Dakota Review, Dusie and elsewhere. She is a VONA/Voices of our Nations Art fellow as well as a recipient of a University of California Institute for Research in the Arts Grant, the Gluck Program of the Arts Fellowship, Naropa University’s Zora Neal Hurston Award, Squaw Valley Writers Fellowship, and Fishtrap Fellowship. She has received scholarships from Tin House, Split This Rock, Dzanc Books' International Literary Program, and others.

location

X
  • Born: Iloilo City, Philippines
  • Based: Southern California, CA, USA

comments

X

Eve's Mistress (screen capture)

Angela Peñaredondo

2016 Screen capture of video performance Courtesy of the artist.

contributor

X

Angela Peñaredondo

b. 1979

Born in Iloilo City, Philippines, Angela Peñaredondo is a Pilipinx poet and artist (on other days, she identifies as a usual ghost, subdued comet, or part-time animal). Her first full-length book, All Things Lose Thousands of Times (Inlandia Institute, 2016) is the winner of the Hillary Gravendyk Poetry Prize. She is the author of a chapbook, Maroon (Jamii Publications, 2015). Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in AAWW’s The Margins, Four Way Review, Cream City Review, Southern Humanities Review, South Dakota Review, Dusie and elsewhere. She is a VONA/Voices of our Nations Art fellow as well as a recipient of a University of California Institute for Research in the Arts Grant, the Gluck Program of the Arts Fellowship, Naropa University’s Zora Neal Hurston Award, Squaw Valley Writers Fellowship, and Fishtrap Fellowship. She has received scholarships from Tin House, Split This Rock, Dzanc Books' International Literary Program, and others.

location

X
  • Born: Iloilo City, Philippines
  • Based: Southern California, CA, USA

comments

X

The Young

Angela Peñaredondo

2016 Digital video recording Duration: 2m 38s Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Angela Peñaredondo

b. 1979

Born in Iloilo City, Philippines, Angela Peñaredondo is a Pilipinx poet and artist (on other days, she identifies as a usual ghost, subdued comet, or part-time animal). Her first full-length book, All Things Lose Thousands of Times (Inlandia Institute, 2016) is the winner of the Hillary Gravendyk Poetry Prize. She is the author of a chapbook, Maroon (Jamii Publications, 2015). Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in AAWW’s The Margins, Four Way Review, Cream City Review, Southern Humanities Review, South Dakota Review, Dusie and elsewhere. She is a VONA/Voices of our Nations Art fellow as well as a recipient of a University of California Institute for Research in the Arts Grant, the Gluck Program of the Arts Fellowship, Naropa University’s Zora Neal Hurston Award, Squaw Valley Writers Fellowship, and Fishtrap Fellowship. She has received scholarships from Tin House, Split This Rock, Dzanc Books' International Literary Program, and others.

location

X
  • Born: Iloilo City, Philippines
  • Based: Southern California, CA, USA

comments

X

The Young (screen capture)

Angela Peñaredondo

2016 Screen capture of video performance Courtesy of the artist.

contributor

X

Angela Peñaredondo

b. 1979

Born in Iloilo City, Philippines, Angela Peñaredondo is a Pilipinx poet and artist (on other days, she identifies as a usual ghost, subdued comet, or part-time animal). Her first full-length book, All Things Lose Thousands of Times (Inlandia Institute, 2016) is the winner of the Hillary Gravendyk Poetry Prize. She is the author of a chapbook, Maroon (Jamii Publications, 2015). Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in AAWW’s The Margins, Four Way Review, Cream City Review, Southern Humanities Review, South Dakota Review, Dusie and elsewhere. She is a VONA/Voices of our Nations Art fellow as well as a recipient of a University of California Institute for Research in the Arts Grant, the Gluck Program of the Arts Fellowship, Naropa University’s Zora Neal Hurston Award, Squaw Valley Writers Fellowship, and Fishtrap Fellowship. She has received scholarships from Tin House, Split This Rock, Dzanc Books' International Literary Program, and others.

location

X
  • Born: Iloilo City, Philippines
  • Based: Southern California, CA, USA

comments

X

When The Saints Turned into Carnival Dancers

Angela Peñaredondo

2016 Digital video recording Duration: 3m 45s Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Angela Peñaredondo

b. 1979

Born in Iloilo City, Philippines, Angela Peñaredondo is a Pilipinx poet and artist (on other days, she identifies as a usual ghost, subdued comet, or part-time animal). Her first full-length book, All Things Lose Thousands of Times (Inlandia Institute, 2016) is the winner of the Hillary Gravendyk Poetry Prize. She is the author of a chapbook, Maroon (Jamii Publications, 2015). Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in AAWW’s The Margins, Four Way Review, Cream City Review, Southern Humanities Review, South Dakota Review, Dusie and elsewhere. She is a VONA/Voices of our Nations Art fellow as well as a recipient of a University of California Institute for Research in the Arts Grant, the Gluck Program of the Arts Fellowship, Naropa University’s Zora Neal Hurston Award, Squaw Valley Writers Fellowship, and Fishtrap Fellowship. She has received scholarships from Tin House, Split This Rock, Dzanc Books' International Literary Program, and others.

location

X
  • Born: Iloilo City, Philippines
  • Based: Southern California, CA, USA

comments

X

When the Saints Turned to Carnival Dancers (screen capture)

Angela Peñaredondo

2016 Screen capture of video performance Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Angela Peñaredondo

b. 1979

Born in Iloilo City, Philippines, Angela Peñaredondo is a Pilipinx poet and artist (on other days, she identifies as a usual ghost, subdued comet, or part-time animal). Her first full-length book, All Things Lose Thousands of Times (Inlandia Institute, 2016) is the winner of the Hillary Gravendyk Poetry Prize. She is the author of a chapbook, Maroon (Jamii Publications, 2015). Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in AAWW’s The Margins, Four Way Review, Cream City Review, Southern Humanities Review, South Dakota Review, Dusie and elsewhere. She is a VONA/Voices of our Nations Art fellow as well as a recipient of a University of California Institute for Research in the Arts Grant, the Gluck Program of the Arts Fellowship, Naropa University’s Zora Neal Hurston Award, Squaw Valley Writers Fellowship, and Fishtrap Fellowship. She has received scholarships from Tin House, Split This Rock, Dzanc Books' International Literary Program, and others.

location

X
  • Born: Iloilo City, Philippines
  • Based: Southern California, CA, USA

comments

X