Lecture Series


The Courtauld Institute of Art, Vernon Square Campus, London WC1X 9EW
6-7.30PM, 14.05.2024

Following our collaboration with CCA Berlin (Centre for Contemporary Arts Berlin) to present the public programme accompanying the exhibition 'Offerings for Escalante' by Enzo Camacho and Ami Lien, we are delighted to announce that Camacho and Lien will be the speakers for the third instalment of ‘Critical Habitats’, the recurring Asymmetry Distinguished Lecture Series at the Courtauld Institute of Art, on Tuesday, 14 May 2024.

‘Offerings for Escalante’ showcases a new body of work created between various cities of their durational exhibition and the Philippines, the culmination of the artist duo's many years of fieldwork on the plantation island of Negros and their extensive investigation into the ongoing struggles for food sovereignty and land justice across borders.

At the core of 'Offerings for Escalante' lies the film Langit Lupa (2023), which follows the afterlife of the 1985 Escalante Massacre on the island of Negros in the Philippines. The film weaves together a series of documentary encounters spanning interviews and testimonials, alongside formal and narratological experiments: natural materials foraged on Negros by the artists are transformed into cinematic collages that flash in the vein of Stan Brakhage’s Mothlight (1963), nursery rhymes become songs of commemoration, and the passage of time—which is to say, the risk of forgetting—becomes nullified through children reenacting funerary rituals for those who were martyred. Against the backdrop of Ferdinand Marcos Jr.’s current regime and its attempts to suppress those testifying to structural violence in the Philippines, Langit Lupa explores how the Escalante Massacre endures as both a rupture and inflection point in Negros’ collective memory, whilst also portraying the revolutionary culture that subsists among the people.

The lecture will dive into the process of developing the piece in Negros alongside other aspects of the travelling exhibition and feature excerpts of the film.


This is the third event in the 2024 Asymmetry Distinguished Lecture Series, ‘Critical Habitats’, convened by Dr Wenny Teo, Senior Lecturer in Modern and Contemporary Asian Art at the Courtauld, and Michèle Ruo Yi Landolt, Director at Asymmetry Art Foundation.


Enzo Camacho (*1985, Philippines) and Ami Lien (*1987, USA) are an artist duo based between New York and Berlin. They have had solo exhibitions at Kunstverein Freiburg (2018); and Hessel Museum of Art, Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson (2018). Their work has been included in recent group exhibitions at Tai Kwun Contemporary, Hong Kong (2022); the 10th Asia Pacific Triennial, Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane (2021); the 5th New Museum Triennial, New York (2021); the 39th EVA International, Limerick (2021); Manifesta 13, Marseille (2020); the Drawing Center, New York (2020); the Kuandu Museum of Fine Arts, Taipei (2019); the Brunei Gallery, SOAS University of London (2019); the NTU Center for Contemporary Art, Singapore (2018); UCCA Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing (2017); Jim Thompson Art Center, Bangkok (2017); and Green Papaya Art Projects, Manila (2009). In 2023, they were the recipients of the Gold Art Prize, and they are currently Senior Fellows at the Lunder Institute of American Art at Colby College.