Maia Cruz Palileo: Untethering Filipino History From American Exceptionalism

Billy Anania, Hyperallergic, July 18, 2019

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Early in her career, Brooklyn painter Maia Cruz Palileo sought to translate her family’s history into fine art. Working with photographs from the 1960s and ‘70s, she painted a visual memoir of their emigration from the Philippines and resettlement in Chicago. During this time, she discovered several public archives from the Philippine-American War, colonial period, and World War II that portray Americans as noble saviors. Further research into these events revealed an absence of native Filipino perspectives prior to the country’s independence, due primarily to generations of Western omission.