Independent Documentary Photography in ASEAN–From the Falls of Marcos to the Digital Boom

On 1 March 2011, I delivered this presentation on PLATFORM Singapore. Here is the synopsis:

“I am basically a researcher focusing on photography in Southeast Asia (ASEAN). As an extension of that interest, I write, curate and photograph. In this talk, I will look at the development of independent documentary photography in Southeast Asia since 1986. The year is significant because it signaled the start of the gradual breakdown of dictatorial structures in place within the region–something that has always influenced the production of documentary photography. The next two shifts occurred during the Asian Financial Crisis and the boom of digital technology. In this very brief overview, I will highlight key individuals and initiatives within ASEAN that have seized upon these changes to produce poignant works about the societies where they come from. In this sense, I am primarily interested in documentary photographers working independently in their country-of-origin, fueled by a burning desire to make thoughtful and intelligent comments about her or his environment.”

Here is the video recording of the presentation: