Art@Site Elina Chauvet Reds Shoes Mexico

Elina Chauvet


Reds Shoes

This artist's red shoes stand in for all the women lost to violence
Elina Chauvet's red shoes are worldly. They've been in Milan, Italy, and Grand Rapids, Michigan. Not just one pair, but hundreds '' red boots, red heels, red toddler shoes. They're not there to see the sights, but to take up space. Especially when the women or girls who would have worn them no longer take up any space, except in the lives of their loved ones.
For more than a decade, Chauvet has staged her 'Los Zapatos Rojos' installation in cities around the world. In January, the 60-year-old Mexican artist helped activists paint 300 shoes red and laid them out in pairs in an open, public place: inside Mexico City's historic square. Some of the pairs '' four of them '' had once belonged to women who had been victims of gender-based deadly violence. To mark their absence, two mothers had personally painted and placed their daughters' shoes inside the plaza.
For Chauvet, red takes on several meaniodshed, but also change and hope and love, according to the artist.
On Monday, nearly two months since Chauvet's installation, Mexican activists launched a nationwide, 24-hour women's strike, known as #UnDiaSinNosotras (A Day Without Us) on social media. There were fewer women and girls in work places, schools, the streets and other public spaces to demonstrate what it would be like if there were no women. Activists hoped the action will further pressure government officials into taking action against femicide in the country.
Mexico officially made 'femicides' '' the killings of women because of their gender '' legally distinct from homicides in 2012. That change was meant to lead to tougher penalties and a greater support system for victims.
On average, 10 women and girls are killed each day in Mexico, according to an oft-cited statistic. That number has risen since 2016, when official government figures put the number at eight per day. But not all female murder victims are classified a that can differ in each country according to their specific legal definition.
You shared your voices and continue to take a stand with us '' for all women and girls. On June 4th, we hosted a Virtual Red Shoes Installation and march with Elina Chauvet and more frontline defenders, partners, and friends from across the globe '' in Nigeria, Pakistan, Russia, Afghanistan, and more.
On the 20th of August, 2009, Mexican architect and artist, Elina Chauvet, made an installation in memory of hundreds if not thousands of young women who disappeared, were tortured and then were killed in Juárez during 1990s and 2000s.A border city with the United States, Juárez, Mexico, has a population of nearly two thousand and is a free trade zone. This makes it vulnerable to drug trafficking and the town's cheap labor is also used by American corporations. These factors combine to produce a culture of abuse, particularly towards women who work in thies. The term '˜Femicide' was coined in Juárez making it an iconic city and raising awareness all over the world about gender-driven violence, a situation that continues even today.
It is not the first time that a symbolic act of memory transcends the actual territory and the specific event it refers to. That is the case of Red Shoes, an installation replicated over 80 times since its first creation in 2009. Sometimes Red Shoes aims to commemorate the women of Juarez and at other times it is about denouncing general violence against women. The traveling of this piece has been possible thanks to associations, universities, artists, activists and independent groups. The original 2009 installation consisted of 33 pairs of donated red female shoes that were placed along Juarez Avenue, the main street connecting Mexico to the US. The second time was in 2012, in Sinaloa, where this time Chauvet collected 300 pairs of donated shoes. Many installations followed and are still taking place around the world - thrk is a concept that can be reproduced anywhere.
The actual logistics of this installation are not complicated; its complexity lies in the fact that it symbolizes a public catharsis of pain. Thanks to the red female shoes, the focus is on women and a message that needs to be shared out loud, comprising issues such as domestic, workplace or any other gender-related violence. Another unique trait is that it brings together people from inside and outside of the art world and its message resonates on so many levels.
The way this piece travels breaks down many barriers and opens an opportunity for debate, personal insight, and the creation of a solidarity network as well as freeing the work from art-related burdens such as conservators and insurance. It is a piece that is 'performed' in an urban space for only one day and relies simply on the will of its citizen participants. Chauvet designed the project to travel internationally, using social networks to organize and promote it. The project has been rcated in Mexico, Chile, Argentina, Ecuador, Paraguay, United States, Norway, Canada, Spain, Italy, and the UK, and there are more to come.
The impact is so great that the artist is constantly being asked to replicate the piece and collaborate on new versions of it.
Source: Shanghai Academy of Fine Arts.
The Mexican government labels a killing as a femicide when there are certain 'reasons' for the violence, including whether the victim suffered degrading injuries or mutilations before or after their death, if the victim's body is displayed in a public place, or if there's a history of violence in the family, workplace or at school against the victim.
Calls for widespread protests ramped up after a series of grisly killings. Ingrid Escamilla, 25, was found stabbed in Mexico City, her body skinned and missing several organs. Police said Escamilla's husband confessed to the killing. Photos of her body were then spread on social media and websites. One national newspla, ran its story of Escamilla's death with the headline: 'It was Cupid's fault.'
In a separate case, 7-year-old Fátima Cecilia Aldrighett was abducted from her school in Mexico City and later found dead in a plastic bag. Police found her body days after news of Escamilla's death.
Despite a 2012 claim by a Mexican delegation to the United Nations that the country was 'gaining ground' on ending femicide in the country, the numbers have since continued to climb. The year 2019 was Mexico's most violent year overall in recent recorded history. Mexican officials recorded 35,558 homicides. Of those, 3,825 victims were women. And the number of killings that were investigated and classified as femicides is 1,006. The year before, that number was at 912.
The government's repeated statements to investigate and prosecute the cases have not been borne out. The number can vary, but fewer than 10 percent of femicide cases are solved.
In Mexican capital, red shoes of women
Stiletto heels. Clogs. Trainers. Tiny, child-size Crocs.
Activists placed hundreds of painted-red women's shoes on Mexico City's sun-drenched main square Saturday to call attention to gender-based violence in a country where, on average, 10 women and girls are murdered each day and less than 10 percent of the cases are ever solved.
Elina Chauvet ( Casas Grandes , Chihuaua , 1959 ) is a Mexican architect and visual artist especially known for her installation 'Red Shoes', an art project in which she denounces violence against women and femicide.
Elina Chauvet studied Architecture at the Autonomous University of Ciudad Juárez in Chihuahua. He began in art in a self-taught way and later he trained in courses and workshops in painting, drawing, ceramics, graphics, alternative media and photography. She held her first exhibition in 1996. The denunciation against violence against women stands out in the theme of her works.
'Red Shoes' is the work for whic is internationally known. The installation was born in 2009 in response to the wave of femicides in Ciudad Juárez in the 1990s, his hometown. It was inspired by the death of the artist's sister at the hands of her husband. The first installation was presented in a plaza in Ciudad Juárez on August 22 from a donation of 33 pairs of shoes. Later they have organize"replicas" in other cities of Mexico, Argentina, Italy, the United States, Norway, Ecuador, Canada, Mexico and Spain among others. In total nearly fifty facilities 2015.
Chauvet has participated in more than forty group exhibitions since 1994. In 2017 his work was included in the exhibition "Feminicide in Mexico ¡Ya Basta" presented at the Memory and Tolerance Museum in Mexico City.
The #RedShoes project, with the support of Every women treaty, took place en masse in Ukrian and was supported by the Kesher Project . Hundreds of women posted photos on social media.