(Art) Juárez City Mothers (with Frida Kahlo) by Eileen Haley

Quilt by Eileen Haley. One of her EarthWomen series.

Quilt by Eileen Haley. Part of her EarthWomen series.

 

Women from Juárez, Mexico, demonstrate for justice for their daughters, victims of the high rate of femicide for which their city is notorious. The predominance of pink reflects the use of this colour in the campaigns conducted by the mothers to emphasise the youth and femininity of the victims.

Frida Kahlo is not only a symbol of Mexican women’s creativity and courage in the face of suffering, she produced an unsparing indictment of femicide in her painting Unos cuantos piquetitos (A Few Small Nips).

The background is made up of fabrics I purchased in a country town in Mexico and evokes the lushness of the landscape and the fertility of the volcanic soil.

Within this background, the Virgin of Guadalupe emerges out of a large stylised shape of the pre-Colombian Earth Goddess Tonantzin.

The richly hallucinogenic magical lore of Mexico makes no overt appearance in this work, dominated as it is by themes of tragedy and struggle. However in the golden threads surrounding the figure of the Goddess and the vibrant colours of the background fabrics we may see a hint of a sustaining awareness of a brighter, more beautiful world to be found within the grim realities of everyday life.

Meet Mago Contributor Eileen Haley.

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