Juan Orrantia

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Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Nationality: Colombian
Biography:                   www.juanorrantia.com   
Public Project

When I arrived 6 years after the massacre there were no statues, no monument, nothing to remember the tragic day. “We carry it in our bodies, in our heads and in the water where the dead fell and over which we live”, they told me.  In a small town that lies at the end of Colombia’s main river, in a swamp that meets the sea, paramilitary forces murdered 32 men on the night of Nov 22, 2000. As months and years passed they slowly began to cope, settling to a sense of normalcy amidst heat and isolation. But sometimes, as children to young to remember splash the water or run across the spaces where the dead once lay, a flashing image will spark. For those who saw, this new sense of time is a space filled with gentle reminders, not memories washing out. For them, the dead will always travel in the swift movement of water, sometimes revealing their presence, but a presence that most of us tend not to see under the sun.



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