Presented as part of ‘The 8th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art’
Lav Diaz is one of the leading figures of contemporary cinema, celebrated for his intensely poetic and beautiful works exploring the social and political history of the Philippines. His films have dealt with the era of martial law under Ferdinand Marcos (1965–86); the revolution against Spanish colonial rule; and the devastating aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan in 2013. He is also heralded as the most active proponent of ‘slow’ or durational cinema. Running between 4 to 12 hours, his films derive a remarkable command from their use of duration, bearing witness to life with an epic approach more commonly associated with literature. For APT8, the Gallery presents 13 major works by Diaz constituting almost 70 hours of screen time – a commitment reflected in Diaz’s own unwavering dedication to conveying the struggle of the Filipino people, or what he refers to as ‘the Filipino psyche’, as a reality experienced in real time.
“I WOULD GO TO ANY EXTENT IN MY ART TO FATHOM THE MYSTERY OF HUMANKIND’S EXISTENCE. I WANT TO UNDERSTAND DEATH. I WANT TO UNDERSTAND SOLITUDE. I WANT TO UNDERSTAND STRUGGLE. I WANT TO UNDERSTAND THE PHILOSOPHY OF A GROWING FLOWER IN THE MIDDLE OF A SWAMP.”
Image: Mula sa kung ano ang noon (From What Is Before) 2014 | (Film Still)