The Eternity of Tomorrow - PhMuseum

The Eternity of Tomorrow

Cristóbal Olivares

2019 - Ongoing

The Eternity of Tomorrow: Police violence against Mapuche youth.

"Nighttime is not the same anymore, sometimes is longer...I never know when the police could come..." F.C (13)

The Mapuche are the largest indigenous community in Chile. They are concentrated in the south of the country, mostly in the Araucanía region which is the poorest region in Chile with a population of 957.224 which 17,2% lives below the poverty level. For almost a century they have claimed their right to recover ancestral lands and natural resources that have been affected by the negative impact of the forest industry and state business.

In the absence of a responsive government that allows the restitution of the land, the level of the conflict in the Araucanía region increased. The Mapuche adopted measures of pressure like the squatting of the lands and properties demanded. This claiming right process and the increase of clashes generated a negative reaction from the government that resulted in the implementation of a policy of judicial persecution and criminalization of collective action, harassment and persecution of leaders, and the militarization of these ancestral territories.

The violence against the Mapuche has serious and specific consequences on children and teenagers, derived from repression, criminalization, raids, interrogations, and other actions carried out by members of the special operation forces. Different NGO's and the national institute of human rights counted 133 cases that include several police violence against Mapuche youth in the last 5 years, while many other cases has not been reported. During the same years 2.241 bullets have been fired by the police in the region. Those cases are rarely reported through traditional media, that brings as a consequence misinformation, letting the Chilean population knowing very little about the Mapuche conflict and their demands. This project focus on the experience suffered by the Mapuche youth documenting testimonies of repression, psychological and physical violence.

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  • F. H. (21) Lives in a recovered land. He and his family has suffered teasing and psychological violence from the police. Despite not having lived an episode of severe physical police violence he believes that at some point it will happen. Collipulli, Araucanía. July 20th, 2019.

  • Smoke from a bonfire set for a traditional ceremony to try to recover a territory taken by the non native forest company “Mininco”. This rite is called Ngillatun and works as a connection with the spiritual world to ask for well-being, strengthen the union of the community or thank the benefits received. Collipulli, Pine forest area. October 4th. 2019.

  • Mapuche community made circles around a Rewe (spiritual totem) during a traditional ceremony made to ask for strength to recover a territory taken by the non native forest company “Mininco”. This rite is called Ngillatun and works as a connection with the spiritual world to ask for well-being, strengthen the union of the community or thank the benefits received. Collipulli area, Araucanía. Chile. August 7th.2019.

  • A forest fire near Bio Bio Region. Several forest company uses to burn their forest in order to renew their production, often they goes out of control causing huge impact in the environment and nearest towns, most of them Mapuche communities. January 26th, 2017. Chile.

  • V.C.(12) Her father and brothers were falsely accused of murder and his house was violently raided by the police. Ercilla, Araucanía. Chile. April, 14th. 2019.

  • The living room of the Torres-Toro family. One of the sons, S.T (14) was shot in the leg by the police during a raid at this home in Pidima area, Araucanía, Since April 20, 2017 Silvestre lives with five bullets in his left leg, one of which is partially embedded in the kneecap and another dangerously close to the femoral artery. Araucanía region, Chile. April, 7th. 2019.

  • Riot police stands guard in a street during a protest in Chile, October, 2019. For the Mapuche community the National police institution (Carabineros) represents the physical action of repression ordered by agents of the state with political and economic interests. For decades, the institution has been questioned for its excessive use force and power abuse against civilians and Mapuche communities.

  • Belén Curamil(19) daughter of Alberto Curamil, Mapuche political prisoner holding a Kultrun, a Mapuche traditional musical instrument. Curacautín, Araucanía region, Chile. March, 23rd. 2019.

  • A chicken hangs in a wall of the house of Fabiola Antiqueo(20). She was shot in her left eye with a tear gas can fired with a shotgun by members of riot police on May 12th, 2017. As a result of the impact she lost her left eye. Carahue, Araucanía region. Chile.2oth, March. 2019.

  • Weliwen Curamil(9) son of Alberto Curamil, Mapuche political prisoner and 2019 Goldman environmental prize, which he received in jail. In this photo Weliwen wears a Kollón mask, used in Mapuche ceremonies to ward off evil spirits. Curacautín, Araucanía region, Chile. August,11th. 2019.

  • Moisés Curamil(15) son of Alberto Curamil, Mapuche political prisoner and 2019 Goldman environmental prize, which he received in jail. Here, Moisés is fitting a traditional poncho or manta, Mapuche traditional warm clothing. Curacautín, Araucanía region, Chile. August, 11th 2019.

  • The Araucaria is the fundamental tree in the religious and economic life of the Mapuche-Pewenche people. Almost all the forests of this species are in Wallmapu called today Araucanía. the seed of the araucaria has been used for centuries to make flour with which tortillas can be prepared, in addition to fermented drinks. Conguillio, Araucanía region. Chile. August, 9th. 2019.

  • The house of Fabiola Antiqueo(20) she was shot in her left eye with a tear gas can fired with a shotgun by members of riot police on May 12th, 2017. As a result of the impact she lost her left eye. Carahue, Araucanía region. Chile.March, 20th. 2019.

  • T. H. (9) has seen his father been imprisoned by the police several times. Collipulli, Aracaunia. Chile. April, 9th. 2019.

  • A court to play palín, a traditional Mapuche game, is drawn in the middle of a forest of non-native species (pine and eucalyptus) owns by the Mininco forestry company. Collipulli area. Araucanía. Chile. November 4th. 2019.

  • A man cuts a piece of firewood after a traditional ceremony to start the recovery of a territory. A man cuts a piece of firewood after a traditional ceremony to begin the recovery of a territory. This rite is called Ngillatun and works as a connection with the spiritual world to ask for well-being, strengthen the union of the community or thank the benefits received. Aug,7th,2019. Curaco, Araucanía region, Chile.

  • A tree stands alone in a field near Collipulli, Araucania region. This area has been labeled as “red zone” due to the ongoing land conflict between the state, landowners and Mapuche communities. April 18th, 2019. Chile.

  • Brandon Hernandez Huentecol was shot in the back while immobilized by sergeant Christian Rivera who was sentenced to 3 years probation. Brandon still has over 80 lead bullets in his body. (He was impacted with more than 130) Curaco, Araucanía region. Chile. April 18th, 2019.

  • A road crosses forests of pine, eucalyptus (not native species, planted by forest industry) and other species near Peleco, Araucanía region.Chile. July 21st.2019.


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