A Spectator’s Interpretation of Erika Diettes’ A Punta De Sangre
From the North side at Bolivar Plaza, through crowded rows of Colombian soldiers, I am able to see an image of 5 feet tall one woman's face. Her eyes are looking pensive and awestruck by defeat and her wrinkles reveal the elation that has written her expression. A few days later eating lunch at a restaurant called Jugueteria-toy store, I discover the name of her mother is Ana de Dios, and her brother was killed, a victim in Violencia. Violencia. Erika Diettes is the Colombian artist behind de Dios' photograph, that is among three pieces in the artist's most recent project, A Punta de Sangre (By the force of the violence). In a more contemporary context, La Violencia is a reference to the general brutality of civil conflict in Colombia that dates back to an era of political tension and bloodshed in the late 1940s. A broad, ubiquitous term can be used to obscure the severity that the phrase encapsulates. "Sometimes people are kidnapped due to the influence of money. Sometimes, it's due to the power of. Sometimes, it's because of politics," Diettes says as she sits and she pulls out her thick black notebook stuffed with photos of notes, quotes, notes as well as memories. The case of de Dios' case, no one knows why her brother was missing or why he was killed This is true of the majority of these occurrences in Colombia. While most of the Colombian conflict is described as paramilitary in nature vs. guerilla warfare, most times the violence is not able to have anything to do with whether an individual is part of one or the other. Diettes clarifies that, generally it is not known why their family members are kidnapped. "They could be recruited by a vengeance motive It could be anything" Diettes says. De Dios' found out about her brother's murder from a witness during a town hall. "He didn't know if [theycut the body and burned the body, however he knew his brother was killed," Diettes explains in an easy, gentle, and concise manner. The truth is horrifying, but it's a reality de Dios has to acknowledge. Visit:- https://www.diojournal.com/ Typically, the remains of the victims are not regarded by the river systems of Colombia with the raging waters sweeping them away. "Ana claimed that every whenever she saw a river and was looking for his body," Diettes tells me in her explanation of why, since there's no real hope to find the bodies of the victims family members only try to offer them a dignified burial. Rivers almost become cemeteries for the victims, which is why Diettes employs water as a symbol in her work. In the second work of A Punta de Sangre, the translucent surface of water is utilized, bringing a calming sense of reassurance to the exhibition overall. "I employ the water as a metaphor of memory,"" She says. "Life can be described as water. The flow of life continues. It cleanses, purifies." The image is reminiscent of Rio Abajo, or Drifting Away, Diettes' original exhibit where she lent items of clothing belonging to the victims, and took pictures of the shirts footwear, and military uniforms in the sea, preserving their memories and addressing human element of an issue that is now very controversial. The conflict between the paramilitary and the guerilla is so vague and apparent that it is similar to inner city gang wars. The fights do not continue because of political differences or even out of resentment for the war's consequences. Diettes says that one family had a son who was in the paramilitary forces and another in the Guerilla. "It is easy to be the victim, and it's also easy to become the one who causes the pain," Diettes says. "I'm not interested in politics. I'm concerned about Ana's pain." From her charming studio in Bogota, I watch a film interpretation from Rio Abajo, filmed in the rural areas of Colombia where much of this violence occurs. Even on her 15" inch Macbook images are haunting. The video captures one of her most significant accomplishments. To allow families of the victims to have a sort of memorial, Diettes went to East Antioquia which is a State that is known as among the most dangerous states in Colombia and showed all the pieces that were part of Rio Abajo. Typically, these works are printed on five-foot tall glass, like the three in Bolivar Plaza, and positioned in a way that visitors must walk around every one of the glass panels. They are designed to resemble tombstones. the display is meant to give visitors the sense of walking through a cemetery. But at East Antioquia, Diettes wanted to give families the opportunity to remember their loved ones, not just an exhibition. So she was intent on taking every photo she takento ensure that every person had the opportunity to remember the person who died. One hundred and fifty pictures, lit faintly by candlelight, were suspended from the ceiling of an abandoned community hall. As the footage reemerged, I couldn't help but see vultures drawing circles in the sky above a tranquil river. "After traveling for about a year and an half," Diettes told me, "I found one thing in common with all of them: families would follow vultures." Diettes explains that, instead of being the vulture being a sign to death, the vulture has become an indicator of hope for some of these families. Upon spotting one in the sky, they will look up to see what the bird might have found. the body of somebody they know. For the third part of A Punta de Sangre, Diettes has a vulture photographed and brought to her studio, and photographed. In this photograph, she has managed to capture the look of sorrow and shame in the bird she named Lucho. She explains the fascination in seeing this animal, usually associated with the negative aspects of death, as something more positive, allowing the vulture to be seen as an almost divine symbol to "show people the way." Diettes describes how, in her photograph of Lucho his beak is pointed downward, resembling praying. "In the photo it's like he's saying, this is my task. I must do this." Diettes says. "He is like an executioner asking the victims to forgive them." An Anthropology graduate with a BFA in Communication, Diettes studied at Universidad de Los Andes which is which is a prestigious university located in Bogota. "I always wondered, how people can survive violence? What are the ways to deal in the face of it? That's why I decided to pursue anthropology as a field." She continues, explaining that the suffering people endure will eventually change their lives. "You can see it in their faces," she declares, pointing out an unidentified young man's face within her rife journal. The initial inspiration for her work came from a newspaper article, chronicling the struggles of one victim's family. "I took photos of clothing before, but to have enjoyment. After reading this article, I decided to and put it together." Then she decided to go out for lunch with an acquaintance who knew some of the victims' families personally. She proposed her project-that she would like to take articles of victims' clothing and take pictures of the items in water. He asked Erika whether she was serious about it and the two went to his office where Diettes got to meet one of the victims' mothers. "I informed her about my plans. She was skeptical, and told me"you should come on the next day'. And I did." As time passed, many families began to send Diettes boxes of clothes, which she promptly returned after taking pictures, letting people know she was serious. "Every small detail," Diettes asserts, "I gave back."

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *