WSABI Fox [Warped Sanggot And Boss Interior] is rhythmically-fixated, guitar loop-smitten performance artprog encompassing music, movement, video, & sensorial happenings by Filipinx Brooklyn-based artist, Jennae Santos. The Sanggot is a Visayan Philippine hand sickle— a farming tool and martial arts weapon that guides WSABI artistic, political, and emotional practice in the Harvest of love, community, & subsistence, and the Fight for the oppressed body. Our blade is Warped from the ongoing work at hand: decolonization, abolition, & warrior pedagogy, fight songs against white supremacist patriarchal capitalism, love songs stoked in multi-sensory radical commitment. Boss Interior means inner strength through the work, and acknowledgment of both the oppressor and the spirit of resistance within colonized identity. Fox, as in clever, life-enforcing pleasure.
In 2019, WSABI Fox played over 30 shows in 12 different performance arrangements nationwide, including Resonator festival, LoveCove installation, regional tours, movement cycles, handcrafted merch, and a music video, all produced by DIY efforts, on a dogwalker’s income. Jennae has since lost her job through the pandemic, but limitations unveil refreshing insight into new performance modes. Over the past few months, WSABI Fox has played and produced livestreams: Live From Quarantine, Stay Home Music Fest benefit for NYC Health + Hospitals, and The MF Stream fundraiser for C’mon Everybody. In August, WSABI Duo of Love released THREE HOUSES live EP in support of Sogorea Te Land Trust. In collaboration with Nahtal, WSABI Fox played Home Audio’s open air series, a benefit for Red Hook Farms. Santos is a recipient of the Bagri Foundation’s At Home in the World commission highlighting Asian artists’ work in response to Covid-19 for a movement video series, Loops for Bedroom Dancers, out now. Santos recently produced a 3-song music video for RAAH Fest, an online festival to amplify those affected by migration displacement, human trafficking and racial discrimination, which airs October 24. Beyond the music, Santos has received a vital abundance of decolonization education from Pinay and Pilipinx knowledge-bearer communities, the Center for Babaylan Studies and Survival Arts Academy. She has developed utmost respect for urban farming, volunteering at her local Red Hook Farms, and growing evermore obsessed with the food justice and activism work of Leah Penniman, Vandana Shiva, Winona LaDuke and A Growing Culture’s Hunger for Justice series.
The Agenda Audiofemme Grant will help support a walking mixtape exploring the music of Harvest, in collaboration with Red Hook Farms. As a decolonizing Filipinx, Santos was mesmerized by a rice winnowing song recording from Kalinga mountain province, and folk dances based on different baranguays’ agricultural specialties and goods, witnessed through the streets of her grandmother’s ancestral village in the Philippines’ Aklan province. There has always been a sacred relationship between art and nature in pre-colonial cultures. This project hopes to help revive that connection as ancestrally and experientially tied to the Red Hook, Brooklyn community. In the modern age, both the music industry and our food system are harmfully commodified by capitalism. Could we begin to heal both, joining them together in immersive engagement?