Monday, 11 December 2023

Textile Details

'¿Dónde están? / Where are They?', Anonymous. (Photo: Colin Peck)
'¿Dónde están? / Where are They?', Anonymous. (Photo: Colin Peck)


Title of Textile:¿Dónde están? / Where are They?
Maker: Anonymous
Country of Origin: Chile
Year Produced: 1980c
Size (cm): Standard
Materials: Scraps of material hand sewn onto burlap
Type of Textile: Arpillera

This is a very intimate arpillera. Rather than portraying an entire village or a particular scene, this portrays a single woman, sewing and hoping for justice and the return of her loved ones. Her face is partially hidden by the quilt she is sewing, representing the fact that women often buried their sorrows and put on a brave face-the face of poor women working for justice.

"¿Dónde están? Where are they?" was a common theme throughout the dictatorship and the motto of the Association of Detained Disappeared. Many people felt the loss of a loved one, whether it was because of forced exile or because they had been "disappeared". People vanished without a trace, leaving their loved ones wondering, "Where are they?" At the bottom of this arpillera are representations of a man, a woman, and a child. All are asking, "Where are they?" Everyone is affected.

Women, in particular, suffered both physically and emotionally through the loss of their loved ones. Although most of the arpilleristas are anonymous, we can feel their emotions in their work. Some also left little notes in pockets on the back of the arpilleras.

Owner: Marjorie Agosín collection
Location: USA
Original / Replica: Original
Photographer: Colin Peck

Textile exhibited at: The Politics of Chilean Arpilleras, 8/02/2008 - 19/04/2008
Chilean Arpilleras , 11/09/2008 - 11/10/2008
The Politics of Chilean Arpilleras, 23/09/2008 - 23/09/2008
L'art de la supervivència: les veus de la resistència de les dones xilenes, 4/11/2008 - 12/12/2008

Textile Detail Image(s)