The Peace Process, Mandate for Truth, and Comuna 13 Medellín
Written by Alexandra Goméz, coordinator of the Verdad Poética Projecto (Poetic Truth project), Comuna 13, Medellín
The Casa Amiga Community Museum of Memory in Comuna 13, will be a place with local guides, murals and graffiti, art installations, and a location for travelers that want an immersion into the true history of the Colombian armed conflict. Read on to find out more…
The 2016 peace agreement signed between the Colombian Government and the FARC is explicit in the recognition of the victims, and as part of this, it placed a great emphasis on the process of reconstruction of the historical memory, the right to truth, justice, reparation and the guarantee of non-repetition.
A commission has been set up to generate artistic and cultural processes that will preserve the history and the current reality of Comuna 13 in Medellín. The social organization from Comuna 13 Asociación de Mujeres de las Indepenedencias, in alliance with the commission in the project Veradad Poetica, and One line is focused on improving the relaxed practices of guides and also in the creation of the community museum Casa Amiga. It is seeking to deepen the mandate of the Truth Commission, in an exercise that integrates memory, tourism, and social transformation, along with using art as a tool for transformation, giving voices to the victims, to honor them, and to include their story in the truth of the armed conflict.
In October of this year, the Casa Amiga Community Museum of Memory will be opening to the public. Here you will find trained local guides in the Contadoras de Historias project (Story Tellers of History project), along with an archaeological look at the use of graffiti as a cultural artifact representing the history of the armed conflict in Comuna 13.
For many of the inhabitants of Comuna 13, the past is still painful and is shown through art, especially with the hip hop movement, and graffiti as a shared cultural asset with the international community. With the help of the outdoor escalators, thousands of people walk through Comuna 13 daily to admire and learn the truth behind this graffiti. Due to the desire to be conscious and respectful of the memories and the truth, BnB Colombia Tours is a tour operator that only uses professional guides, and also participates in this project.
The Casa Amiga Community Museum of Memory will be located at the bottom of the escalators and urban art galleries. When completed it will be the perfect place for tourists to start their tour listening to the Storytellers. This museum will also have a space for murals and graffiti, art installations, and a documentation center for travelers that want an immersion into the Colombian armed conflict, the real truths, memories, and to recognize not only the violence that the community went through in the context of the conflict but also the resistance, confrontations, and dignity of those who inhabit and are still re-building Comuna 13.
For the Commission and the allied organizations, the Truth is a narrative made in different voices and does not necessarily coincide with the institutional or generalized truth. In this sense, it seeks to strengthen the territorial spaces for social dialogue, to build these truths from the social bases and especially, from the victims.
Other organizations allied in the implementation of the mandate of the Truth Commission are the Association of Women of Independence, Afro-Colombian Foundation Casa Tumac, Color Tour Travellíng, BnB Colombia Tours, and Radio Libre.
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