topic

Environment

“Eating is the act of ingesting the environment.” -- Naomichi Ishige (qtd. in Fernandez, "Culture Ingested")

 

"[S]low violence ... occurs gradually and out of sight, a violence of delayed destruction that is dispersed across time and space, an attritional violence that is typically not viewed as violence at all. ... [Slow violence] is neither spectacular nor instantaneous, but rather incremental and accretive, its calamitous repercussions playing out across a range of temporal scales" like "[c]limate change, the thawing cryosphere, toxic drift, biomagnification, deforestation, the radioactive aftermaths of wars, acidifying oceans, and a host of other slowly unfolding environmental catastrophes." -- Rob Nixon, Slow Violence and the Environmentalism of the Poor (2011)

Litany for the Sea

Aimee Suzara

Apr 20, 2010 Poem. Courtesy of the author.

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Aimee Suzara

b. 1975
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Aimee Suzara is a Filipino-American poet, playwright, performer and educator based in Oakland. Invited as a featured artist nationally from Florida to Oregon, she is also a member of the writer’s pool for PlayGround at Berkeley Repertory Theater and a Hedgebrook residency alumnae. Her second play, A History of the Body, was awarded the East Bay Community Fund Matching Commission and a grant from National Endowment for the Arts. Her first chapbook, the space between, was nominated for the California Book Award and her poems have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies. Her full length book, SOUVENIR, is expected for publication in 2014. Suzara teaches Creative Writing at California State University at Monterey Bay. Of her work, writer Kimberly Dark has said, “Aimee is bringing themes to light that beg to be handled - race and gender, the complexities of immigration and colonization, queer lives and how we navigate our human complexities in the everyday world.”

My mission is to create, and help others create, poetic and theatrical work about race, gender, and the body to provoke dialogue and social change.

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  • Born: New York, NY, USA
  • Based: Oakland, CA, USA

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Alexander Orquiza

b. 1980

Alexander Orquiza is a historian of the twentieth century United States and the Philippines. From 2012-2013, he was an Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow at Wellesley College, and he joined the Tutorial Board of History and Literature at Harvard University in fall 2014. He received his B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley, his M.Phil. from the University of Edinburgh, and his Ph.D. in history from the Johns Hopkins University.
 
His work focuses on cultural and intellectual exchange between the US and the Philippines. His first book, A Pacific Palate: Food and the Philippine Middle Class during the American Period, 1898-1946, is forthcoming. It examines how American colonial reformers, businessmen, educators, and bureaucrats used food to transform the daily lives of Filipinos. Orquiza contends that food reform was essential to the American imperial mission in the Philippines. It created new consumers for American goods as well as farmers who produced goods for the American consumer market. These food reforms affected generations of Filipino public school students and transformed menus in restaurants and hotels. They were part of visual culture in magazine and newspaper advertisements, and were the focus of Philippine-American economic and political debates.
 
Orquiza argues that food is a powerful lens for examining history. Too often, society only considers the fleeting consumer aspects of food—where is the hip new restaurant, what is the latest food fad, how to make so-called “authentic” versions of dishes. But society often ignores the equally important aspects of food supply: how do ingredients arrive at our tables, who is working in farms and kitchens, are they receiving a fair and decent wage. Orquiza asserts history has shaped our individual roles in this market. Knowing how these roles evolved and how they changed over time is just as important as nutritional labels and Yelp reviews. As a historian, Orquiza believes the answers to these questions about food lie in our knowledge of the past.
 

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  • Born: USA
  • Based: Boston, MA, USA

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Urban Landscape 1

Alfred Marasigan

2015 Found objects Dimensions variable Courtesy of Alfred Marasigan

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Alfred Marasigan

b. 1992
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Alfred Marasigan is a visual artist from the Philippines. Born and raised in Lipa, Batangas, he graduated magna cum laude and Program Awardee from the Ateneo de Manila University (2013) with a BFA in Information Design, a Loyola Schools Award for the Arts (Graphic Design), and an Outstanding Scholar Award. Last June 2015, he became a First Round Winner (General Category) of Art Olympia: International Open Art Competition in Tokyo, Japan. His other artworks have also been included in various local and foreign exhibitions such as Galerie Métanoïas's Un Seul Grain de Riz: A Small format Graphic Art Competition (2014-15), Metropolitan Museum of Manila's MET Open 2014, Metrobank Art and Design Excellence (MADE) Painting Competition Exhibition (Semifinalist, 2014); and in publications like Fordham University's CURA Magazine, the San Fransisco Museum of Modern Art's Tumblr, and Ateneo de Manila University's Heights. He has been a faculty member of Ateneo's Fine Arts Program for two years, and is now an MFA student in the College of Fine Arts at the University of the Philippines (Diliman).

The process of capturing relationships between the personal and the spatial fascinates me. Through painting, conceptual art, and installation, I often explore associations between identity, personal narratives, and myth-making, with context, landscape, and environment. In particular, I like how human subjectivity lends value to 'space' as concept, and transforms it into 'place' as experience. Just as well, I am intent on grasping the essence of placelessness. Whenever I travel via different modes of transportation, I gain valuable insights regarding myself and the world. I treat such experiences as sites of introspection. Ultimately, finding groundedness in transit motivates my art-making.

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  • Born: Batangas City
  • Based: Manila, Philippines

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Urban Landscape 2

Alfred Marasigan

2015 Found objects Dimensions variable Courtesy of Alfred Marasigan

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Alfred Marasigan

b. 1992
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Alfred Marasigan is a visual artist from the Philippines. Born and raised in Lipa, Batangas, he graduated magna cum laude and Program Awardee from the Ateneo de Manila University (2013) with a BFA in Information Design, a Loyola Schools Award for the Arts (Graphic Design), and an Outstanding Scholar Award. Last June 2015, he became a First Round Winner (General Category) of Art Olympia: International Open Art Competition in Tokyo, Japan. His other artworks have also been included in various local and foreign exhibitions such as Galerie Métanoïas's Un Seul Grain de Riz: A Small format Graphic Art Competition (2014-15), Metropolitan Museum of Manila's MET Open 2014, Metrobank Art and Design Excellence (MADE) Painting Competition Exhibition (Semifinalist, 2014); and in publications like Fordham University's CURA Magazine, the San Fransisco Museum of Modern Art's Tumblr, and Ateneo de Manila University's Heights. He has been a faculty member of Ateneo's Fine Arts Program for two years, and is now an MFA student in the College of Fine Arts at the University of the Philippines (Diliman).

The process of capturing relationships between the personal and the spatial fascinates me. Through painting, conceptual art, and installation, I often explore associations between identity, personal narratives, and myth-making, with context, landscape, and environment. In particular, I like how human subjectivity lends value to 'space' as concept, and transforms it into 'place' as experience. Just as well, I am intent on grasping the essence of placelessness. Whenever I travel via different modes of transportation, I gain valuable insights regarding myself and the world. I treat such experiences as sites of introspection. Ultimately, finding groundedness in transit motivates my art-making.

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  • Born: Batangas City
  • Based: Manila, Philippines

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Urban Landscape 3

Alfred Marasigan

2015 Found objects Dimensions variable Courtesy of Alfred Marasigan

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Alfred Marasigan

b. 1992
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Alfred Marasigan is a visual artist from the Philippines. Born and raised in Lipa, Batangas, he graduated magna cum laude and Program Awardee from the Ateneo de Manila University (2013) with a BFA in Information Design, a Loyola Schools Award for the Arts (Graphic Design), and an Outstanding Scholar Award. Last June 2015, he became a First Round Winner (General Category) of Art Olympia: International Open Art Competition in Tokyo, Japan. His other artworks have also been included in various local and foreign exhibitions such as Galerie Métanoïas's Un Seul Grain de Riz: A Small format Graphic Art Competition (2014-15), Metropolitan Museum of Manila's MET Open 2014, Metrobank Art and Design Excellence (MADE) Painting Competition Exhibition (Semifinalist, 2014); and in publications like Fordham University's CURA Magazine, the San Fransisco Museum of Modern Art's Tumblr, and Ateneo de Manila University's Heights. He has been a faculty member of Ateneo's Fine Arts Program for two years, and is now an MFA student in the College of Fine Arts at the University of the Philippines (Diliman).

The process of capturing relationships between the personal and the spatial fascinates me. Through painting, conceptual art, and installation, I often explore associations between identity, personal narratives, and myth-making, with context, landscape, and environment. In particular, I like how human subjectivity lends value to 'space' as concept, and transforms it into 'place' as experience. Just as well, I am intent on grasping the essence of placelessness. Whenever I travel via different modes of transportation, I gain valuable insights regarding myself and the world. I treat such experiences as sites of introspection. Ultimately, finding groundedness in transit motivates my art-making.

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  • Born: Batangas City
  • Based: Manila, Philippines

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Chance for Change

Chelo Aestrid XienHow

2014 Music video 4m 44s Courtesy of LivenFire Records and Chelo Aestrid

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Chelo Aestrid

b. 1980
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Chelo Aestrid is a Cebu-born, LA-raised, London-educated, and Manila-residing singer, dancer, host, writer, designer, actress, and entrepreneur. With powerful vocals, energetic dance moves, thought-provoking lyrics, funky style, and fun stage persona, she loves to thrill any crowd. She has performed in Asia, North America, and Europe and has opened for international acts such as Justin Timberlake, Ne-Yo, Timbaland, Nicki Minaj, and Pussycat Dolls. She has toured in Southeast Asia as an adidas Originals sponsored host with urban music legends Ali Shaheed Muhammad of Tribe Called Quest, Maceo of De La Soul, Tony Touch, and the Triple Threat DJ’s. She received “Best Dance Recording” from the Awit Awards, “Female Style Icon” and “Best Music Video” from the Urban Music Awards in Manila. She is a founding member of the Philippine Allstars, the two-time World Hip-hop Dance Champions. She also has experience in acting (TVCs and feature film), hosting, modeling (print), teaching dance, and organizing events. She is a founder of the clothing lines Capital G and BY:CHelo; and of the webstore BarongWarehouse.com, which sells quality barong tagalong at the lowest prices. She has studied Performing Arts, Architecture, and Fashion Design, and she finished a First Honours (Summa Cum Laude) Business Administration degree at Middlesex University, London, U.K. Lastly, she has been involved in non-profit organizations such as Gawad Kalinga, Child Hope, Rock Ed, Greenpeace, and Change.org. She also volunteered for disaster relief efforts including personally raising funds for her provincial hometown of Cebu after Typhoon Haiyan, which led to the creation of the song and foundation “Chance for Change” with XienHow.

Note: Chelo Aestrid collaborated with XienHow on the music video Chance for Change, which CA+T republished in its online exhibition Storm.

In November 2013, Typhoon Yolanda/Haiyan devastated most of the Visayas region of the Philippines. Thanks to many friends across the world we were able to provide some assistance to people who lost their homes in Borbon, Cebu. The job is not done, but we wanted to show you a great place to start helping the families already affected, and we wanted to create a sustainable platform for future funding for families affected by natural disasters. We started the CHANCE FOR CHANGE FOUNDATION and created a music video to show the sunny smiles of the Filipinos that never fade regardless of the challenges they face.

As a renaissance artist and a businesswoman, Chelo Aestrid is always striving to be her best self in any given situation through perseverance, passion, and positivity. She has been blessed to be able to do what she’s done so far, and only wishes to continue the good work and help others achieve their own highest potential. 

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XienHow

b. 1981
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XienHow was born Zen Seville and has had a very interesting life to say the least. Having moved 30 plus times by the time he was twelve, from Baja California all the way up to the Bay Area, he has a perspective that only people who have spent a lot of time traveling can have. Coming from parents with a spiritual background and belief system, he is very open minded and identifies himself as a spiritual person.  Having spent the greater part of the last 15 plus years honing his artistic talents and simultaneously working a full time “career job” in the construction industry, he is considered by many as an active member of many philanthropic and artistic circles. His professional experience has allowed him to develop an outstanding work ethic, which in turn helped him fund a lot of the community work and artistic platforms he continuously has provided to artistic communities throughout his career. In 2006, XienHow made his first trip to the Philippines where he fell in love with her people and culture. He has returned 13 times since then and has worked with the local entrepreneurs/philanthropists “Konektado” to continue creating positive and productive outlets and platforms for the people. Through his working relationship with Konektado, he met Chelo Aestrid, which is how the “Chance for Change” collaboration came to life. 

XienHow is an artist who focuses his music on the positive development of the mind and on changing the way people view their lives. He draws on the pain, struggles, and successes of his life to make music that he spreads on a global scale. He has worked with many legendary artists throughout the industry and has toured throughout the world and continues to do so. He is willing to work with other people with the same dedicated hard working ethical understanding. He works in the light of God and will not waver at the hands of darkness.

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  • Born: USA
  • Based: San Francisco, CA, USA

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Stay in the Light

Christian Almiron of Gentei Kaijo

2014 Live Improvisational Jam Session 21m 37s Courtesy of Gentei Kaijo

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Christian Almiron of Gentei Kaijo

b. 1982

I am a Filipino American born and raised in New City, NY, in Rockland County. Like most children I was forced to play the piano. In this case I was 5 learning from a teacher who made me cry during most lessons. Needless to say, I was more interested in playing outside than practicing. I would always dread my next lesson. I eventually quit when I was 7 or so until I met my church organist at 10. He was kind and played beautifully, but most importantly, he was patient. I remember thinking “I want to do that!” I’ve always had difficulty expressing myself with words, but somehow music was a language that came easily for me to speak. As cliché as that sounds, it’s the truth. Luckily, I’ve been working professionally since. I got my Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from SUNY Purchase and moved to New York City where my real education started. Since then I’ve worked in TV, feature films, played all around the world and, more recently, composing music for commercials. You can hear me play every Sunday at “The World Famous Café Wha” and every Thursday at Arlenes Grocery for “The Lesson” on the Lower East Side. I look forward to whatever music has in store for the future and always looking for opportunities to grow. 

 

The “Lesson at Arlene’s Grocery” has garnered the reputation and respect as the ultimate live hip-hop jam on the Lower East Side, NYC. You’ve recently received wonderful press attention from The Village Voice  and OkayPlayer. Please describe the community and spirit of "The Lesson at Arlene's Grocery" and Gentei Kaijo’s role in building it.

The Lesson is a community which embraces the unknown. It's a place where people foster creativity and more importantly change.

Why did you choose this weekly jam session to create this particular song for the Typhoon anniversary?

The name of my band is called Gentei Kaijo which is a Japanese phrase meaning “limitation cancellation.” We try to cancel our own limits whether it’s getting better as musicians, learning how to coexist or facing obstacles we tend to face everyday. When we perform at The Lesson we improve, we make it up as we go. And with trust and faith, we can build something from nothing--it's magical. So when I think about that, I feel these ideas can apply to life especially those who fell victim to Typhoon Haiyan.

Who is the personnel on the song?

Christian Almiron on Keyboards, Nick Semrad on Keyboards, Lenny Reece on Drums, David Cutler on Bass, Phase One the EmCee, Jonathon Hoard on Vocals. Guest Appearance by Mike Larry.

What does the title mean?

“Stay in the Light” was the hook that John came up with in that moment. The meaning of the title is what you need it to be. 

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  • Born: Nyak, NY, USA
  • Based: New York, NY, USA

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Into the Burl

Christopher Sicat

2011 Graphite on oak burl 36 in. x 24 in. x 8 in. Courtesy of the artist.

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Christopher Sicat

b. 1968
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Christopher Sícat was a long time Los Angeles artist and curator before relocating to the San Francisco Bay Area. He graduated from Otis/Parsons School of Design (B.F.A.) and the New York Academy of Arts (M.F.A. cum laude). His recent sculptures investigate the natural environment as a platform for process- and performance- based art making. Sicat has exhibited his works at the de Saisset Museum in Santa Clara, CA; Space 47 and Art Arc in San Jose, CA; Palo Alto (CA) Art Center; and Swarm Gallery, Southern Exposure, and Intersection for the Arts in the San Francisco Bay Area, CA. In the past he has also shown at JAUS, Track 16 Gallery, and Black Dragon Society in Los Angeles, CA; Intramuros Museum in Manila, Philippines; and Claremont Graduate University in Claremont, CA. Sicat directed the infamous Hatch Gallery, which hosted the controversial “Rejection Show” that was highlighted on the BBC The World.

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  • Born: Pampanga, Philippines
  • Based: San Jose, CA, USA

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Into the Burl

Christopher Sicat

2011 Graphite on oak burl. 36 in. x 24 in. x 8 in. Courtesy of the artist.

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Christopher Sicat

b. 1968
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Christopher Sícat was a long time Los Angeles artist and curator before relocating to the San Francisco Bay Area. He graduated from Otis/Parsons School of Design (B.F.A.) and the New York Academy of Arts (M.F.A. cum laude). His recent sculptures investigate the natural environment as a platform for process- and performance- based art making. Sicat has exhibited his works at the de Saisset Museum in Santa Clara, CA; Space 47 and Art Arc in San Jose, CA; Palo Alto (CA) Art Center; and Swarm Gallery, Southern Exposure, and Intersection for the Arts in the San Francisco Bay Area, CA. In the past he has also shown at JAUS, Track 16 Gallery, and Black Dragon Society in Los Angeles, CA; Intramuros Museum in Manila, Philippines; and Claremont Graduate University in Claremont, CA. Sicat directed the infamous Hatch Gallery, which hosted the controversial “Rejection Show” that was highlighted on the BBC The World.

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  • Born: Pampanga, Philippines
  • Based: San Jose, CA, USA

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Into the Burl

Christopher Sicat

2011 Graphite on oak burl. 36 in. x 24 in. x 8 in. Courtesy of the artist.

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Christopher Sicat

b. 1968
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Christopher Sícat was a long time Los Angeles artist and curator before relocating to the San Francisco Bay Area. He graduated from Otis/Parsons School of Design (B.F.A.) and the New York Academy of Arts (M.F.A. cum laude). His recent sculptures investigate the natural environment as a platform for process- and performance- based art making. Sicat has exhibited his works at the de Saisset Museum in Santa Clara, CA; Space 47 and Art Arc in San Jose, CA; Palo Alto (CA) Art Center; and Swarm Gallery, Southern Exposure, and Intersection for the Arts in the San Francisco Bay Area, CA. In the past he has also shown at JAUS, Track 16 Gallery, and Black Dragon Society in Los Angeles, CA; Intramuros Museum in Manila, Philippines; and Claremont Graduate University in Claremont, CA. Sicat directed the infamous Hatch Gallery, which hosted the controversial “Rejection Show” that was highlighted on the BBC The World.

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  • Born: Pampanga, Philippines
  • Based: San Jose, CA, USA

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