Wednesday, 21 February 2024

Textile Details

'Ausencias - Presencias 2 / Absences – Presences 2', by
Ana Zlatkes. (Photo: Martin Melaugh)
'Ausencias - Presencias 2 / Absences – Presences 2', by Ana Zlatkes. (Photo: Martin Melaugh)


Title of Textile:Ausencias - Presencias 2 / Absences – Presences 2
Maker: Ana Zlatkes
Country of Origin: Argentina
Year Produced: 2015
Size (cm): 60cm x 70cm
Materials: Collage of images transferred to canvas, small pieces of discarded fabrics, sewing and embroidery threads.
Type of Textile: Arpillera

The military dictatorship led by Lieutenant General Videla in Argentina from 1976-1983 was characterised by human rights violations, forced disappearances and illegal arrests. The Nunca Más (Never Again) report (1984) by the National Commission on the Disappearance of Persons estimate that up to 9000 cases of forced disappearance and other human rights violations were perpetrated and conclude the real figure to be much higher. Approximately 30% of victims were women with children under the age of 15 numbering 200.

Abducted pregnant women, who gave birth in detention centres were then generally killed whilst many of their babies were illegally adopted by military or political families.These atrocities seeded the beginnings of the Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo (Grandmothers) in 1977, a non-governmental organization which highlighted and investigated the disappearances of their children and grandchildren.

In this arpillera, first exhibited in Women that Sew Days Together, Buenos Aires 2015, we see these grandmothers marching around the obelisk in front of the government buildings in Plaza de Mayo. Every Thursday, for over forty years, they have continued this action, protesting and denouncing the disappearance of their children and grandchildren, and demanding answers.

The swirling white stitches marks their weekly walk, signigying that it is ongoing, seemingly never ending. The bleak colours allude to this dark period of Argintinean history; an era that the Abuelas will not permit the state to forget.

(Global Ministries - external partner) Grandmothers of Plaza de Mayo, Argentina
(European Parliament) Las Madres de Plaza de Mayo – 1992, Argentina

Owner: Conflict Textiles collection
Location: c/o Gloria Cortés Aliaga, Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes, Santiago de Chile
Original / Replica: Original
Photographer: Martin Melaugh
Provenance: Ana Zlatkes

Textile exhibited at: Mujeres que Hilvanan Días / Women that Sew Days Together, 5/03/2015 - 10/04/2015
Arpilleras de América Latina: Mujeres cosedoras de vida , 19/03/2016 - 24/04/2016
LA VIDA QUE SE TEJE Tejidos de América Latina por la memoria y la vida, 11/05/2016 - 10/07/2016
Textile Language of Conflicts, 6/11/2017 - 10/11/2017
Justicia Transicional y Arte-Textil / Transitional Justice and Art-Textile, 24/09/2018 - 18/10/2018
Embracing Human Rights, 5/11/2019 - 18/12/2019
Embracing Human Rights: Conflict Textiles’ Journey, 9/01/2020 - 31/07/2020
Following the footsteps of the disappeared, 30/08/2020 - 30/08/2021
Following the Footsteps of the Disappeared 2021, 31/08/2021 - 20/12/2021
Following in the Footsteps of the Disappeared, 13/10/2021 - 13/10/2021
Tras las huellas de los/as desaparecidos/as, 10/01/2022 - 5/02/2022
Arpilleras Poéticas, 7/12/2023 - 12/02/2024
Diásporas textiles: Diálogos con la Colección, 12/02/2024 - 17/03/2024

Textile Detail Image(s)