Portraits of a search
The son of Guadalupe, a retired nurse, was to meet his brother at a gas station but never arrived. Dalia's daughter Natividad disappeared with her husband when they were on their way to the United States. Yahaira, daughter of Margarita, is from Michoacan, but disappeared weeks after going to live Oaxaca.
Since then, their mothers have been visiting morgues, graves, prisons, prosecutors, facing not only the emptiness of their loss and uncertainty, but also to the failure and complicity of the Mexican authorities and, above all, the social prejudice that their children "were involved in something."
Portrait of a Search tells the story of these and other women trying to find their children, alive or dead. Mothers whose lives have been on hold. Mothers that the government cannot or will not attend.
Official statistics are not clear, but according to civil victim organizations, there have been an estimated 10,000 cases or more of disappearances during the presidency of Felipe Calderon. The National Human Rights Commission alone recognizes and is investigating the disappearance of nearly 5,400 people. So we are facing an issue that will mark the history of Mexico irreversibly.
The Mexican Institute of Cinematography (IMCINE) made a contribution to the production of the script, money we used to start production of the documentary. The images presented in our video come from that source, but we still need to collect a lot of material to finish.
If we reach our funding goal, we can finish the production of the documentary and schedule it for release during 2013. One of the rules of crowdfunding is that if we don’t reach our goal of 90 THOUSAND PESOS ($6,838), you get your money back. (And we will not receive anything).
If you believe in our project, if you believe these stories should be told, we ask you to help us with a donation that may be from 150 to 10,000 pesos.
There are two practical ways you can support:
We have designed a scheme of grants ranging from 150 to 10,000 pesos (that IDEAME automatically converts to your currency if you live in another country). All contributions count. The platform offers simple and secure payment methods. Remember that if the 90 THOUSAND PESOS don’t come together, you get your money back.
For the success of this campaign, it is very important that you tell your friends about our project. Convince them to make a financial contribution, no matter how big or small. The sum is what counts.
Spread this page through your Facebook, Twitter and email. Communicate why you think this documentary is worthwhile. Talk it up in your meetings, with your family, with your friends. Our success will depend on how many people know and support our idea.
You probably want to support us without the goal of getting something in return, but for us, every support we receive is a word of encouragement that we are grateful for. So we give you the option of getting a reward.
On the right you will find a list of the options available, depending on the amount of your contribution. Here we advance some pictures of what you will receive.
We are a team of professionals who have shared for years a passion for journalism and audiovisual production. For many years we have sought and told stories that move us and that we care about, and this documentary is our effort to improve life in Mexico a little bit.
Alicia Calderon, Director. The most important part of my story is that I am the mother of a beautiful child of a year and a half. He has become my impulse to direct this documentary that explores some of the harshest faces of motherhood. I've been a print, radio and television journalist for 13 years. My work has been published in national and international media including the Associated Press, CNN, Mexico and ATEI. Now I am a freelance journalist. I studied Communication Sciences and I have graduate studies in Communication, Social Change and Development from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid.
"The Blind Side" (2010) was my first short documentary, made during the Workshop on Theory and Practice of Documentary Filmmaking Post Production, taught by Ambulante.
Karla Uribe, Production. I think Portrait of a Search is a project that brings to life the voices of mothers often silenced by pain and indifference. This issue stirs up the soul and as a professional, I sympathize with that cry for justice. Since 2006 I have worked as a film producer. My last job was the film "Fecha de caducidad (Expiration Date)“ (2012), which premiered last year at the International Film Festival of Morelia, currently continues its festival circuit with several national and international awards in its favor. I graduated in Science and Technology Communication, a Masters in Learning Technologies at the University of Guadalajara.
Dalia Huerta, Photography
The extremely pertinent theme of the documentary and the first mothers’ stories I heard broke my heart. I am very keen to tell these stories because, although it is painful to hear them, they are being told throughout the country. Now I think that a missing person could be my friend, my brother, my father. We are surrounded by invisible people turned into uncertainty and despair; we can not simply turn away.
I work as a photographer and documentary filmmaker and also in registration of works by artists and museums. I earned a degree in Communication Sciences and have taken workshops, courses and a certification program in film and video in Guadalajara, Oaxaca, Mexico City, Utrecht (Netherlands) and San Antonio de los Baños (Cuba). I have been a Fellow of the National Council for Culture and the Arts (ECSC) in 2007 and 2010 in the category of film and video.
My most important activity is documentary photography and direction of short documentaries that have been selected by film festivals Morelia, Guadalajara and Film Corner Cannes, among others.
Gricelda Torres Zambrano, Research. This part of my story began when I discovered the most dramatic and painful reality I have seen in my 21 years as a journalist. Never until this administration, had I found myself face to face with so many episodes of violence affecting ordinary people like my neighbors, friends, family, acquaintances, colleagues and mothers like me. I have been a radio reporter for two decades and host of "Buenos Días Metrópoli", a radio morning news program at Notisistema. I specialize in covering the human rights perspective, so my works explore social phenomena such as migration, femicide, human trafficking and poverty, among others. In 2011, I covered the Caravan for Peace with Justice and Dignity throughout eleven southern states of the country, and in 2012, I covered Mexico's appearance before the Committee against Torture of the UN in Geneva, Switzerland. I studied Communication Science and am trained in workshops and certification courses in investigative journalism, human rights and journalism in high-risk zones.
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Translation: Tracy Barnett