Promise Burden Prompt Origin Defense Palette Call by Damon Pham | Vietnam

An experimental video poetry project by Damon Pham from Vietnam.

Director’s Note

I work at a few of my mental knots here. There’s stepping off the premed/STEM track (for now…) after becoming very disheartened by a lot of the positivist or narrow-minded tendencies in some of the circles in science & tech.

That was hard; in a selfish sense, I miss having a simpler moral vision, a straightforward theory of change. It was honestly nice to turn a blind eye to the many awful systemic goings-on of the world & the complicity realized by my every choice to choose inaction.

Of course, you need to be reasonable with yourself, but. I still have trouble with this. There’s my aspiration to be deliberate about digging the entryways into understanding, with `art`–like making this object natively available online, for free.

I want to invest a good amount of my work in experiences for people outside of the museum-going circles, and beyond other existing money/incentive structures too. Another goal I try to lay out for myself is being honest with where I come from, especially in contexts where I can sort of get away with not doing so.

By that I mean a lot of what Sớm-Mai Nguyễn has written in her article from this year, “Blunt-Force Ethnic Credibility.” It’s shaped my thinking about heritage & representation so much. But I am also referring to money, means, safety, luck, ability, others’ kindness…

Okay and then also, of course, there’s all this self-centered self-interrogation about my self-criticisms that I needed to offload from myself and help myself get over my self!!! So. I hope this works.

You can listen his poetry music album at

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