Kiri Dalena (b.1975) is an acclaimed visual artist and filmmaker known internationally for her works that lay bare the social inequalities and injustices that continue to persist, particularly in the Philippines. Her active involvement in the mass struggle to uphold human rights amidst state persecution is the foundation for her art practice that underscores the relevance of protest and civil disobedience in contemporary society.

Dalena’s works are both documentation and critical commentary on historical and current state of national political affairs. "Erased Slogans" (2008-today) for instance, is a series of digitally-manipulated scanned photographs documenting the numerous demonstrations during the Martial Law era under then Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos in the 1970s.  Deleting all the text that has been previously written in the placards, the artist encapsulates the magnitude of government suppression carried out under the military regime. "Red Saga" (2004), originally captured in film, recounts the intense armed hostility towards radical individuals and serves as a call for sustained uprising. Meanwhile, "Requiem for M" (2010) tackles one the most brutal murder of journalists in the world – the Maguindanao Massacre – and the culture of impunity that plagues the Philippines.

Dalena's films have been screened in numerous international film festivals, exemplry of which is Tungkung Langit (Lullabye for a Storm) (2012) - a three-channel video chronicle of two orphaned children coping with the aftermath of a typhoon that devastated Mindanao (southern region of the Philippines) in 2011. The film has been shown in Visions du Reel (SW, 2014), Naqsh Short Film Festival (BH, 2014) and in the Sharjah Biennale 11 Film Program (AE, 2013), among others.

Kiri Dalena graduated from the University of the Philippines-Los Baños with an undergraduate degree in Human Ecology, and pursued further studies in 16mm documentary filmmaking at the Mowefund Film Institute. She has participated in several group exhibitions at UP Vargas Museum (Manila/PH), Ateneo Art Gallery (Manila/PH), Lopez Memorial Museum (Manila/PH), Museum of Contemporary Art & Design (Manila/PH), Cultural Center of the Philippines (Manila/PH) and Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo (JP), among others. A recipient of the CCP 13 Artists Award (Manila/PH, 2012) and Ateneo Art Awards (Manila/PH, 2009), Dalena has also been featured in several international art events such as the Singapore Biennale (2013), Yokohama Triennale (Yokohama/JP, 2014), Fukuoka Asian Art Triennale (Fukuoka/JP, 2014), and the Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art (Brisbane/AU, 2015). The artist has been invited to be part of the 2016 Busan Biennale. Her works are currently in the permanent collections of the Singapore Art Museum, Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art, and the Ateneo Art Gallery.

Kiri Dalena was born in Manila in 1975. She lives and works in Manila and Mindanao, Philippines.


1975 born in Manila, Philippines
lives and works in Manila (Philippines)

1993 University of the Philippines, Los Baños (PH) 

(2000-2017, selection)

Manila Biennale: Open City, Intramuros, Manila (PH)

JIWA: Jakarta Biennale 2017, Gudang Sarinah Ekosistem, Jakarta (IDN)
Tiempos Migratorios, Facultad de Artes ASAB, Bogota (COL)
Sunshower: Contemporary Art from Southeast Asia 1980's to Now, The National Art Center, Mori Art Museum,  Tokyo (JP)
On Attachments and Unknowns, SA SA BASSAC, Phnom Penh, (KH)
Arrays of Evidence, 1335MABINI, Manila (PH)
Rosa's Wound, MOCA, Taipei (TW)

Time of Others, Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane (AU)
Busan Biennale 2016: Hybridizing Earth, Discussing Multitudes, Busan (KR)
There Is Another Sky, 1335MABINI, Manila (PH)
Pyongyang International Film Festival, Pyongyang (KP)
Present Progressive, Vetro, Quezon City (PH)

8th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art, Queensland Art Gallery/Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane (AU)
Time of Others, Tokyo Metropolitan Government Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo (JP); National Museum of Art, Osaka (JP); Singapore Art Museum (SG)
Imprints Mo_space, Taguig City (PH) (solo)
Traces, Finale Art File, Makati City (PH)

Recent Slogans, 1335MABINI, Manila(PH)
Yokohama Triennale 2014: Art Fahrenheit 451; Sailing into the sea of oblivion, Yokohama (JP)
The 5th Fukuoka Asian Art Triennale: Panorama of the NextWorld: Breaking Out into the Future, Fukuoka (JP)
What Does it All Matter, as Long as the Wounds fit the Arrows, CCP, Manila (PH)

Singapore Biennale: If the World Changed, Singapore Art Museum(SG)
You Have Every Right, Ateneo Art Gallery, Quezon City(PH)
The Philippine Contemporary: To Scale the Past and the Possible, Metropolitan Museum, Manila(PH)
Picture Imperfect, MO_Space, Taguig City(PH)
Safe Place In the Future (?) Dystopia Now, Utopia Never, Museum of Art and Design, College of Saint Benilde, Manila(PH)
Common Ground Barrier, 1335MABINI, Manila(PH)
Giving Form to the Impatience of Liberty, Württembergischer Kunstverein Stuttgart(DE)
If the World Changed, Singapore Biennale(SG)
Into the Woods, Art Taipei, Taipei(TW)

Washed Out, Finale Art File Tall Gallery, Makati City(PH) (solo)
Killing Time, The Negros Museum, Bacolod City(PH)
Washed Out, Finale Art File, Makati City(PH)
Curved House, Blanc Gallery, Makati City(PH)
Thirteen Artists, Cultural Center of the Philippines, Manila(PH)

Time and Place of Incident, UP Vargas Museum Basement, Quezon City(PH) (solo)
A Little Garden of Earthly Delights, NOW Gallery, Makati City(PH) (solo)
Revolving Secret Garden, UP Vargas Museum, Quezon City(PH)
Placard Show, UP Vargas Museum, Quezon City(PH)
Over Rizal: Monuments to a Hero, UP Vargas Museum, Quezon City(PH)
Complete and Unabridged, Part II, Institute of Contemporary Arts(SG)

Watch History Repeat Itself, Ateneo Art Gallery, Quezon City(PH) (solo)
The Present Disorder is the Order of the Future, Mo_Space, Taguig(PH) (solo)
The Only Risk is that of Openness, Green Papaya Art Projects, Quezon City(PH)
Home Works, Alliance Française de Manille, Makati City(PH)

Thrice Upon A Century, Singapore Art Museum, Singapore(SG)
Current: Daloy ng Dunong, Sungdu-an 5, National Museum, Manila(PH)
PasyoNasyon, Cultural Center of the Philippines, Manila(PH)

Keeping the Faith. Acts of Mediation, Lopez Memorial Museum, Pasig City(PH)
Pure Hybrids and Normal Aberrations, Whitebox Gallery, Cubao, Quezon City(PH)

Found Figures, Mag:net Gallery ABS, Quezon City(PH) (solo)
Shoot Me: Photographs Now, MO_Space, Taguig City(PH)

Painting-in-Progress, Mag:net Gallery Katipunan, Quezon City(PH)

Dayo, Sungdu-an 3, Lingayen and Cultural Center of the Philippines, Manila

Four Women Souls, Surrounded by Water, Pasig City(PH)