Philippine installation art from 1970 to 2008 as the discourse of the Philippine postcolonial avant-garde

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Clod Marlan Krister V. Yambao


The paper maps the artistic production of installation art in the Philippines and dissects the aesthetic impulses of its contemporaenity as a basis of constructing the narrative of the Philippine Postcolonial Avant-Garde. This Postcolonial avant-garde is defined as those artists whose aesthetic positions are articulated through aesthetic newness and innovation originating from Western High Modernism, but foregrounded within the condition of postcoloniality. This concept argues the premise of installation art by these practitioners as discourses in modernity, nationalism, nativism, hybridity, and “internationalism,” which this study deems as an epistemic practice in global mimicry. I will also argue in this paper that the practice of installation art in the Philippines produces the contemporary symptoms of native and indigenous privileging among local practitioners. Such a practice also implicates the use of cosmopolitan and western aesthetics in their discursive articulation. In addition, the conditions of diaspora and migration among some practitioners have also impacted upon the practice of installation as a hybridized gesture. The confluence of the term “postcolonial” as a cultural discourse and condition and “avant-garde” as an appropriation of western aesthetic position foregrounds the postcolonial avant-garde as a key category in constructing a history of texts, institutional practices, material conditions of aesthetic production, and epistemic views on Philippine art.


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V. YAMBAO, Clod Marlan Krister. Philippine installation art from 1970 to 2008 as the discourse of the Philippine postcolonial avant-garde. JATI - JOURNAL OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN STUDIES, [S.l.], v. 16, p. 151-166, dec. 2011. ISSN 2600-8653. Available at: <>. Date accessed: 27 may 2019.