ericamerylthomas [at] gmail [dot] com

Entre Voces

a collaboration with Amélie Cabocel & Colectivo Antioquia Trans


Amélie Cabocel and I arrived to the Casa Tres Patios residency as strangers, but we quickly realized we should work together. We met an amazing mutual aid collective, Colectivo Antioquia Trans, who were interested in collaborating with us on a project. We thought this was a good sign that we could do something really powerful together, and that there was indeed an interest in using our skills as artists to gather stories and present them, to let the women themselves direct the telling of their own histories. 

What came up over and over again was how very difficult it is for trans women to be in public. They told us that they feel unsafe nearly everywhere they go, whether it is from being verbally abused, the threat or even the memory of physical violence. We created this project about the violence faced by trans women in Medellín, in public spaces, but also in their intimate relationships, and in their life in general.

Project Statement

How does it feel when the body is objectified and seen as the property of public space? Violence against the whole person, is a ubiquitous experience of trans women across time and space. These experiences live viscerally within trans bodies. The intensity of feelings related to these violences suffered brought about the production of a spontaneous collective creation; An expressive drawing, mapping the feelings and reflecting the personality of each woman in the group: a collective timeline of prejudice and violence, written and audio testimonies, all of which frame a subjective history of violence against trans women in Medellín.

The making of this project happened quickly, intuitively, a concentration of energy within a few weeks, but in another way, it has taken a whole life. This room itself is part of the project, something like a container for fears, reflection, and desire for change. Together we opened this intimate space for sharing experiences, which we hope to extend into the outside world.

This work deals explicitly with sexual violence.The instituted culture of rape and abuse brings dishonor, most of the time, to the victim, thus imposing a second penalty: that of silence. Entre Voces highlights these abuses in an effort to reverse this mechanism, by denouncing the obscenity of the perpetrators, lifting impunity, and elevating the women’s voices.

Declaración de Proyecto

¿Cómo se siente cuando el cuerpo es visto como objeto y propiedad del espacio público? Violencia contra la persona en su totalidad es la experiencia ubicua de las mujeres trans a través del tiempo y el espacio. Estas experiencias viven visceralmente en los cuerpos trans. La intensidad de los sentimientos relacionados con estas violencias conllevaron a la producción de una creación colectiva espontánea: un dibujo expresivo que mapea los sentimientos y que refleja la personalidad de cada mujer en el grupo; una línea de tiempo que revisa los prejuicios en su contra, y testimonios en audio. Todo esto encuadra una historia subjetiva de violencia contra las mujeres trans en Medellín.

La realización de este proyecto fue rápida e intuitiva; una concentración de energía en unas pocas semanas, que para estas mujeres ha tomado una vida entera. Esta sala es en sí misma parte del proyecto, algo así como un contenedor de los temores, reflexiones y el deseo de cambio. Juntas, abrimos este espacio íntimo para compartir experiencias que esperamos extender al mundo exterior.

Parte del trabajo lidia de manera explícita con la violencia sexual. La cultura de la violación trae consigo el deshonor de la víctima, lo que le impone una segunda condena: el silencio. Entre Voces resalta los abusos con el fin de revertir este mecanismo, denunciando la obscenidad de los perpetradores de estos actos. Intentamos, a través de las voces, romper la impunidad.