In mid-October 2019, Chile started to protest across the nation, demanding dramatic reforms to the country’s social, healthcare and pension system.
According to the National Institute of Human Rights (INDH), the excessive use of force, rubber bullets and teargas by security forces has left over 3.838 injured. Especially the eyes are targeted by security forces, against every protocol. Over 460 eyes were injured, leading to partial or total loss of sight.
This extreme high number of severe ocular traumata has become a symbol for protesters and it has not stopped them to face the excessive repression and systematic violence of Carabineros till this day.
In order to support and pay tribute to the protesters and raise awareness in her community, Line Pa Ke started a series of portraits of said Chileans. All of the works are based on collaborations with on-site photographers, granting her permission to use their images and reinterpret them.
Miradas Ocultas the title of this ongoing series translates from Spanish to Hidden Looks or Dark looks.
Raúl de Valle, 18 years old.
Lost his right eye due to a rubber bullet impact, shot by Carabineros de Chile on 22.10.2019.
“I’ve been using both eyes my whole life, and to lose vision means getting used to having to turn my head more, for example. I have adapted well with the bike, I love cycling and I wasn’t going to drop it either.
My message is to just continue, continue with more desire than ever. With due caution, because the cops are messing with people and are not respecting anything. With proper precautions, continue.”
Natalia Aravena, 25 years old.
Lost her right eye due to a teargas impact on 28.10.2019.
“It means getting used again to do things that were once super casual. Everything is seen from a new angle and you have to get used to how to walk around, not to hit yourself, how to take things because the depth perception is altered. So, it is like starting all over with the visual and motor skills, to get used to doing everything.
I would tell them to continue the fight, that we have not won anything, yet. The government still does not respond, only words to try to calm us down or silence us. They are repressing us by force, and in reality, what we are asking for is only a bit of dignity, which is the minimum that a person deserves to live well. “
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