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LANI ASUNCION
DUTY-FREE PARADISE | WAI: RED HILL HEX

Saturday, April 30 (8pm)
Aurora Picture Show - 2442 Bartlett St. Houston, TX 77098 
$10 / Free for Aurora Members

Lani Asuncion (they/she) is a Boston-based multimedia artist working within public spaces to create socially engaged art by weaving a visual language guided by historical research, community engagement, and experimental performance in relation to their identity as a queer multicultural Filipinx. They use new media technologies as a tool to encourage conversations to magnify connections that work to facilitate healing in the face of cultural violence, oppression, and ancestral trauma narratives.


DFP | WAI:  Red Hill Hex is a multimedia performance addressing the ongoing water crisis in Hawai'i due to leakage from the U.S. Navy Red Hill Fuel Storage Facility in Kapūkaki, 100 feet below the facility sits the Southern Oʻahu Basal Aquifer—the primary drinking water source for the island. This piece serves as a call to action to protect the most sacred of resources, water, in solidarity with the water protectors fighting against irreversible damage. Asuncion uses wearable sculptures, projection mapping, movement, and voice to activate the performance space, across the gallery, land, and sea to their ancestors to protect the land they once labored on to heal those who have been poisoned by these negligent actions. 

The performance will be followed by a conversation between Asuncion and Matt Manalo, artist and founder of Filipinix Artists of Houston.



Lani Asuncion is a Boston-based artist who grew up in Waipahu on Oahu, HI and Okinawa, Japan. They are a multimedia artist who performs in both live public and private spaces using video, sound, projection, and movement to create a visual language that comes from their identity as a queer multicultural Filipinx artist. Asuncion’s work addresses early American histories that are tied to Colonial lineages. Asuncion has exhibited work at several museums and galleries including the Museum of Fine Arts Boston, the Brookline Arts Center and the New Bedford Art Museum. In 2020, they received the Live Arts Boston grant from the Boston Foundation. Asuncion is founder and organizer of Digital Soup collective in Boston that offers public multimedia technically supportive spaces for queer BIPOC artists to perform and share new and experimental performative works. They have an MFA in Video & Sculpture from the University of Connecticut.


Matt Manalo, who will be in conversation with Asuncion, was born in Manila, Philippines and resides in Houston, TX. He creates work which involves elements of painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, and printmaking. He uses raw materials, found objects sometimes collected and often times donated... By doing this, he is making his practice environmentally conscious as well as understanding the idea of scarcity and abundance. He uses the grid as a foundation for most of his work to tackle geography, cartography, borders, and the idea of displacement while having a constant conversation of how “home” should be defined. Being a first generation immigrant, Manalo discusses his experiences navigating around the physical and social structures of society through his work. As he explores this, home becomes a two-part environment where the artist is split between the Philippines and Texas. As he explores this, home becomes a two-part environment where the artist is split between the Philippines and Texas. The latter sits on the southern border of the US. It is also important to mention that colonization of the Philippines by Spain, Japan and the United States resulted in erasure, colorism and colonial mentality; a frequent topic in Manalo’s work. Manalo is the founder of Filipinix Artists of Houston, a collective of visual, performing, literary, culinary, and multidisciplinary artists. He also runs an alternative art space: Alief Art House.

 

 




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