During all 2019, I have worked together with Student Union (FEU) of Guadalajara University (U de G) in the creation of a mural to remember the more than 35,000 young adults, between 16 and 29 years old, who suddenly disappeared in Mexico and are still missing.
This topic is a huge problem in Mexico. Because no one knows what happened exactly to these people, families are desperate, the population feels insecure, and young students are angry. There is some evidence behind their disappearance; there is narco-criminality or sometimes cases of femicides, two important issues far from being solved in Mexico.
As a countermeasure, the Mexican government did almost nothing to solve the problem. They invested a very small percentage of resources to investigate, not even one person is in prison for this crime and police in some cases are frightening disappeared people’s families, telling them not to report their beloved’s absence because this can create more risks for them to be killed.
Student unions around the peninsula have taken action to sensitize the topic and to help disappeared people’s families.
The union asked me to create this work to warn everyone about the situation in which we are living. Thus, I decided to go further and to tell everyone to stand for their rights because together we can change things.
The mural is on three walls. On the first one I painted the faces of 16 disappeared students, surrounding a students standing up; on the second one, I immortalise an important square in Guadalajara whose name was changed in honour all the disappeared people. In the same wall I portrayed the face of three students murdered “by mistake” by narcos whilst shooting a short film in a cottage used in recent years by another narcos family; they thought students were members of the other narcos. They killed them and dissolved their bodies in acid. On the third wall, I portrayed the mothers of these kids during a public demonstration.
The artwork is on walls of FEU’s building and it has been declared art heritage of the university.