Pristine L. de Leon is an art critic, researcher, and educator based in Manila. She lectures on art, writing, and collaboration at the Fine Arts Department of the Ateneo de Manila University. Since receiving the Purita Kalaw-Ledesma prize for art criticism in 2016, she has written reviews and features on visual art and theatre for The Philippine Star. Her research on public art in the Philippines was published in the journal Southeast of Now and was supported by the Emerging Writers Fellowship program. Currently working towards a master’s degree in Art Studies at the University of the Philippines, she researches and writes around space, site, tactility, and participatory practices.

Collage by Pristine de Leon and Alvin Zafra
Collage by Pristine L. de Leon and Alvin Zafra. Full image credits below.

Criticism and Tears: The Emotional is Political in the Marcos State

When a film taps on emotions to distort historical facts, criticism that uses a rational, adversarial voice, above the work and the audiences who enjoy it may fail to dislodge the emotive power of the work’s narrative. Pristine De Leon looks for a path forward as a critic in this tricky landscape in her review of Maid in Malacañang’, a fictionalised retelling of the last days of the first Marcos presidency.

documenta fifteen: Kiri Dalena, Respond and Break the Silence Against the Killings (RESBAK), banner activation, Friedrichsplatz, Kassel, June 18, 2022. Photo: Victoria Tomaschko.

“It Has Been Dreamed”: Kiri Dalena on documenta fifteen

Kiri Dalena, one of the artists at the controversy-ridden documenta fifteen speaks with Pristine De Leon about the uneven dynamics between global exchanges and local needs, between lumbung and rigid hierarchies, between what has materialised and what was dreamed.

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