Variable West on Asian Futures, Without Asians

“It was as if Everything Everywhere [All At Once] took all the things that make sci-fi films insufferable and racist for Asian people, and banished them to another universe. Asian Futures, Without Asians showed us a map of where they were embedded, awaiting their destruction. In their own way, both are defiant, which made it cathartic, brilliant.”

TANG RAINBOW

The 21-foot long mural Tang Rainbow is an array of non-Asian actors outfitted in Chinese-influenced costumes across 50 years of science fiction cinema and television.

SYMPATHETIC WHITE ROBOTS

An installation that “compiles stills from films that marshal empathy for AI agents who are coded as white and humanized through their association with whiteness […] Suparak’s media archaeology interrogates imaginaries of AI”

HELMET TO HELMET

Collage of the Philippine salakót (roughly translates from Tagalog to “native helmet”); how it was worn by Filipinos and Spaniards in the occupying Spanish army; then adapted into the pith helmet, since deployed by every white colonial power.

New York Times on Virtually Asian

“Countering invisibility is at the heart of a short film by Astria Suparak titled ‘Virtually Asian.’ It splices together scenes from science fiction movies in which urban landscapes are filled with stereotypical ‘Asian’ signifiers, but the actual characters are almost exclusively white.”

KQED review of Virtually Asian

“Suparak’s piece is immediate and her voice, narrating the words, is melodic and compelling. The over-dubbing of her acerbic observations on blockbuster films is a compelling prelude to other iterations of her work that will appear in fragments across digital platforms.”

VIRTUALLY ASIAN

Short video essay that looks at how white science fiction filmmakers fill the backgrounds of their futuristic worlds with hollow Asian figures—in the form of video and holographic advertisements—while the main cast (if not the entirety of their fictional universe’s population) is devoid of actual Asian people.

MATCHING MINORITIES// DOUBTFUL DOUBLES

“This is a pretty interesting experiment in real-time […] It’s heartening to see such a keen and engaged audience. Lee, Suparak, and Delos Reyes have set up a really successful platform for exchange.” – Hyperallergic

QUEER THREADS

“Queer Threads is not just an exploration of fiber art and crafts, but also a celebration of the creativity, diversity, and vibrancy of contemporary queer culture.”

WOMEN INC. LEXICON

A lexicon of neologisms coining new words for a new age, one marked by advances in omnipresent technology and mass surveillance; a privatization of art, culture, and education; as well as a continued struggle with intersectional issues.

Media-N Journal review of Virtually Asian

“The mute virtual women of the films profiled in Virtually Asian represent a curtailing of the technologically-enhanced female body. The effect of the accumulation of echoing tropes in Virtually Asian – of repeated images of Asian women in traditional dress appearing as immaterial set dressing for white characters – is to emphasize how relentless this process of erasure is.”