From the Shadows to the Light

Nadège Mazars

2016 - 2017

Never before Colombia has been as far in building peace. End 2016, Colombian government and FARC-EP guerrilla signed a peace agreement that ended with a 53 years-old war. Seven months later, the guerrilla finished to hand over their weapons.

The series was made between Sept. 2016 and Feb. 2017, before the laying down of weapons. It is inspired by the chiaroscuro style of the painter Caravaggio. It is a trial to figure the transition of the fighters from their past clandestine life to a civilian commitment while their singularities are shaping after years in an army under a stringent military discipline.

The territories of Colombia are threatened again by the old patterns that have fed the war for decades. Political assassinations, murders of former guerrilleros uncontrolled use of land resources, cocaine production, lack of state commitment in the countryside jeopardize the future of the country. As Colombia’ plunge further into a state of war, the series showcases those who have sought that hard-to-grasp peace, facing the doubts and fears of a new life in a hostile environment.

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  • Nom de guerre, Daniela Restrepo, 19, 49th Front."I was at school when the paramilitary group came. We had to escape from the house. They killed my father. I didn't see my mother since 6 years. Now I want to study nursing.”

  • Nom de guerre, Marco Gonzalez, 40, 15th Front.

  • Nom de guerre, Gabriel Saldaña 20, 32th Front.
    "I'm here since two years. At first, I came because I like it. And also because I saw all the needs of the people. In the civil life, I want to study."

  • Nom de guerre, Sandra, 24, 15th Front.
    “Find a husband? It’s not a future. And in addition, a responsible husband? No, they abandoned their pregnant wife, with one child…”

  • Nom de guerre, Luis Pepo, 28, 49th Front. "I came to the guerrilla 15 years ago, because there was no opportunity, and also because of the inequality. One day the Army came and killed my father, they said he was a FARC militian but he was nothing!”

  • Noms de guerre, Andri Rivera and Diego Suarez, Carlos Antonio Lozada’s Guard.

  • Nom de guerre, Alejandro, Carlos Antonio Lozada's Guard.

  • Nom de guerre, Martin Tovar, 30, 15th Front.
    "I want to be someone in my life, to give more. I would study law."

  • The FARC-EP Commander Carlos Antonio Lozada, member of the high command of the guerrilla, is sitting on a"caleta”.
    Carlos Antonio Lozada was one of the negociator of the peace deal in La Habana, Cuba.
    He is now one of the 10 congressmen of the FARC as a political party.

  • Nom de guerre, Maicol Estiven Guevara, 24, Teofilo Forero column. "I want to continue to fight and studies. I will continue to be an activist." Michael was murdered few time after the laying down of weapon… probably by a far right paramilitary group.

  • Before integrate the line (in the guerrilla), Andrea was following the seminary to become nun. But she did'nt pronounce her vows. She chose political action and met the guerilla. In the first months of her entry, she met a young man who became his companion for 27 years. Death parted them when he was killed in a combat three years ago. They had a girl who is now a business lawyer working in Brazil.

  • Nom de guerre, Exsenover Narvarre, Teófilo Forero column.

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