Art and Healing in Colombia
April 5, 2018

There is an ongoing debate in academia whether cultural rights are fundamental rights. An undeniable truth in countries like Colombia is that culture and art are tools to help victims to move on, healing wounds of war and triggering historical memory processes. Culture provides shelter to the vulnerable and a foundation to create projects that lead to new horizons in life. Art is a lifesaver.

Afro-Colombian women from the Pacific coast known as Alabaoras use music as a path to keeping a connection with loved ones after death. Their traditional singing serves to denounce abuses committed towards their communities but also helps to heal the pain and to make a call for reconciliation.

 

Another example of this is las Tejedoras de Mampuján (The Mampuján Weavers) who are a group of women from Montes de Maria (northern coast of Colombia in the Caribbean Region) who use weaving to tell stories about their lands and territories in the midst of the armed conflict. Their powerful tapestries are created with the clothes of family members who were murdered, evoking their absence and serving to denounce the violation of human rights.

 

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