Vancouver International Centre for Contemporary Asian Art

Pacific Crossings: Dispatches from Manila

Martin de Mesa, Madam Bwakeva is Venus: A Touch By Touch Performance (still), 2018 – 2020, video. Courtesy of the artist.


Borrowing a term from both navigation and research methods in social science that employ multiple points of view, Triangulations by Pacific Crossings offers three online propositions with artists and curators in Hong Kong, Beijing and Manila, encompassing shared concerns germane to the pandemic and locational contexts. Produced as part of Pacific Crossings in partnership with Centre A: Vancouver International Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, Nanaimo Art Gallery, and Richmond Art Gallery, Triangulations is a coordinated effort to bring forward distinct perspectives from different regions through digital means to support empathy and to cultivate shared understandings about what the future may hold for the arts sector and for the public.

PART III: Dispatches From Manila

An online screening of short video works selected by Lost Frames, a short story by an unnamed artist, and an interview between Allison Collins (Pacific Crossings), Mayumi Hirano and Mark Salvatus (Load na Dito)

July 30 – August 13, 2020

Watch HERE.

Dispatches From Manila asks artists and curators from the region to ‘check-in’, offering perspectives or creative projects that they have been occupied with during the recent months. Metro Manila has been in various types of lockdown since early March 2020, when measures to restrict movement were taken to prevent the spread of disease. With the COVID crisis unfolding among its citizens, governing officials have used the pandemic as a pretense to impose military and police enforcement around the National Capital Region, inciting fear through forms of restriction that echo previous eras of forced civic containment under Martial Law.

Resistant voices among artists in the community, balanced with considerations of safety circulate messages of critique, humourous resistance, and creative forms of virtual comfort. Dispatches relays perspectives of members of the Manila community. The trail of connections reveals a rhizomatic network of solidarity and support.

The program unfolds in three parts:

Dispatches Screening

Programmed by Lost Frames, this virtual screening follows the collective’s regular format of a community screening of short videos selected in an open call. Deliberately ‘anti-curatorial,’ Lost Frames focuses their energies on artist’s recent works and perspectives, emphasizing sharing and feedback over framing devices.

Some works will screen in Tagalog or other local dialects, without translation.

Between the Corpse and the Tree

Remaining anonymous for reasons of safety, this story by an unnamed artist unfolds as a spectral life of palpable fear lived under a militarized state. Drawn from lived experience, both remembered and imagined, the narrator’s account relays the dark atmosphere created by the extreme force that state-sanctioned violence exerts on the lived realities of Filipino citizens.

Interview with Load na Dito

Following their residency with Pacific Crossings in Vancouver in May 2019, this interview asks Load na Dito’s Mayumi Hirano and Mark Salvatus to elaborate on how their projects continue to unfold under the present circumstances of COVID-19.


Lost Frames is a community-based initiative for viewing experimental moving image works in the Philippines, organized by a small group based in Manila. As an in-person event, Lost Frames encourages individuals to share their process and to speak about each other’s methods and ideas. This online screening program presents a selection of artists’ videos from the Philippines.

Load na Dito is a mobile art site that explores creative energies generated and circulated through interactions of individuals, objects, images and ideas. It creates spatio-temporal situations that address issues of participation and problematize the potential of collective production. Load na Dito was initiated by Mayumi Hirano and Mark Salvatus in 2016.

For information about PART I and PART II, please visit