This talk threads through different historic people’s tribunals in the Philippines and by Filipino compatriots abroad against state terrorism and neglect: including the Citizens’ Congress for Truth and Accountability (2006), Open Source Tribunal (2013), and International People’s Tribunal (2018) across three administrations. It connects these to grassroots initiatives, such as the local reenactment of a massacre in Escalante, Negros Island (from 1986 to the present), as spaces for trans/national solidarity to take place. What can be gleaned from alternative tribunals or art actions as performative platforms for asserting reparation, restitution, and accountability? What are the possibilities of such when traditional avenues and institutions for global justice and local truth-telling remain elusive and lacking?
Lisa Ito-Tapang is a cultural worker, writer, and independent curator based in Manila. She is the Secretary-General of the Concerned Artists of the Philippines (CAP), an organization of progressive artists and cultural workers founded in 1983 as a response to censorship during the Marcos dictatorship. CAP continues to organize artists to assert the Filipino people’s right to justice, genuine democracy, and freedom of expression today.
Since 2012, she has been teaching art history and art theory as a faculty member of the Department of Theory, University of the Philippines College of Fine Arts. She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts (major in Art History) and her Masters in Art studies (major in Art History) from the University of the Philippines Diliman. Her research, creative, and curatorial interests explore intersections between art practice, socio-political engagement, and ecology. She was among the fellows of “Condition Report”, a Southeast Asia-wide curatorial development program of the Japan Foundation from 2015-2017.