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18 July 2010

Marcos Adandia, Mothers of the disappeared

Entre el Cielo y la Tierra.

There is no word for a mother who has lost her son. There is no way of naming such a pain.

In my country’s recent history, during the years of the military dictatorship, the violence of state terrorism took thirty thousand lives.

And in a perverse design of the future that the authorities had in mind for this society people were tortured, murdered; children, women, the old, students, workers, journalists, artists, intellectuals and all belonging to any form of expression that was not within the frame work of their plans.

Plans that depended on a society that from then on would remain paralyzed in fear.

In this context, it was only the love of a mother that was able to make one group of women, in the darkest days of Argentinean history, come up with the valor to step forward and state its claim face to a society in terror; taking the streets, banging on all doors, and facing the indifference and mockery of the authorities, they settled for ever in the Argentinean’s most symbolic site, the Plaza de Mayo, in front of the government’s headquarter, so called, Casa Rosada.

One by one, they covered their heads with a white linen diaper, which once, in times when their dreams were of a different hue, had belonged to their sons and daughters.

And with those diapers as a sign of hope of some day recovering their children, they joined in a circle that would never ever end.

From then on, and to this day, every Thursday afternoon, they have walked in a circle around the Mayo pyramid (symbol of Argentine freedom).

A ritual of love and of peace of every Thursday and forever.

Then these diapers became inexhaustible white scarves, and many of these women already had become old ladies, with their illusions intact. Eyes beaming with the question why, and an open wound that still bleeds as on the first day.

Marcos Adandia

Exhibition venue: Atelier des Forges, Parc des Ateliers, Rencontres d’Arles 2010.