Dibujos en Prisión

“Dibujos en Prisión”: Memoria, tortura y resistencia

Hasta marzo del próximo año estará disponible en el Museo de la Memoria y los Derechos Humanos la exposición “Dibujos en Prisión”. La muestra refleja la vida en cautiverio de detenidos desaparecidos en donde la situaciones límites y la vida cotidiana tienen protagonismo.

La muestra incluye desde el campamento de prisioneros de Chacabuco, en el norte, hasta los campamentos de isla Dawson, en el sur, pasando por el Estadio Nacional de Santiago, Ritoque, Puchuncaví, la isla Quiriquina, Pisagua, el buque escuela Esmeralda, isla Riesco, Bucalemu, Estadio El Morro, entre otros.

A su vez, la colección es parte de los más de 300 dibujos y acuarelas que conserva el museo en un libro que fue prologado por el artista Guillermo Núñez, en el cual se pueden conocer a los autores, las condiciones y motivos que los llevaron a ser torturados.

Es por esto que sus autores no son artistas de profesión, muchos de ellos son arquitectos, estudiantes o personas que nunca antes habían considerado el dibujo como método de liberación.

En ese sentido los dibujos reflejan la tortura, las condiciones de encarcelamiento, el aislamiento,  la dureza de vivir en esas situaciones límites, los trabajos forzados y la vida cotidiana, donde ocurrían encuentros, escuchaban música y jugaban ajedrez.

La donación de éstos fue hecha por sus autores, familiares y personas que mantenían estos ejemplares. Al respecto, la jefa del área de colecciones del MMDH, María Luisa Ortíz afirma que “la idea es aportar a la memoria, para reconstruirla y no olvidar”.

Para la encargada, los trabajos constituyen una forma de comunicación entre los prisioneros y sus familias, y que además reafirman la condición humana ante la adversidad. “Como tantos otros prisioneros en esas condiciones, buscaron formas de poder expresarse, transmitir mensajes a los que fuera, podían decir quiénes estaban a dentro, por ejemplo. Está representado todo lo que significa el horror y la situación extrema de prisión política, pero también la resistencia y la capacidad de sobreponerse a las condiciones límites”, señala.

En esa línea, la experta indicó que por medio de los soportes y materiales se puede determinar cuáles eran las condiciones del cautiverio, ya que se pueden apreciar dibujos hechos en papeles de regalo, en cartones, hasta en técnicas más sofisticadas como la acuarela.

“Dibujos en Prisión” está disponible hasta el próximo ocho de marzo en el Museo de la Memoria y los Derechos Humanos. La entrada es liberada y se puede asistir de martes a domingo entre las 10 y las 20 horas.

Publicado en Diario UChile Cultura por Diana Torres   Martes 30 de diciembre 2014 19:36 hrs. 

Mario Cordero Cedraschi, Dibujos en Prisión, Colección del Museo de la Memoria y los Derechos Humanos. Página 26

Pesadilla, Cuartel Borgoño. 1973-1976, Página 27.

 

Cárcel de Valparaíso, celda 417, 1973-1976 , Página 28

El significado de estos dibijos: “representan por un lado querer dejar una huella, una marca en la vida. Por ello es que en los dibujos están escondidos varios nombres de los marinos constitucionalistas, pensando que nos podrían eliminar…                                                                                                                                                      La propaganda de la época nos catalogó como altamente peligrosos, expertos en explosivos, que queríamos eliminar al alto mando de la Armada…lo que concluye más tarde en la inspiración del Plan Z por parte de la dictadura…Por otro lado los dibujos expresan lo que causaba más temor: los traslados. Cuando no sabes adónde te llevan piensas siempre en lo peor. Cuando se habre la puerta de la celda y aparece el custodio con una lista para llevarse gente, se te aprieta todo el cuerpo.

Al interrogatorio 1973-1976. Cárcel de Valparaíso

Si no te toca a tí, te quedas con el espanto de saber si al que se llevaron lo devuelven, o que después viene tu turno. Y lo otro es cuando escuchas los gritos del torurado y observas cuando lo están maltratando. En la cárcel de Concepción llegaba Gendarmería por la noche a torturar delante de nuestro ojos a los presos comunes que estaban castigados en la celda sin luz. Algunos por la angustia se cortaban la piel de su cuerpo con lo que pillaban, con la esperanza que los enviaran a un hospital reclamando instintivamente un derecho humano, y los gendarmes le rebosan sal con ají en las heridas por placer. Esas eran las torturas a las que estábamos expuestos, que están expresadas en el cuadro de la primera galería porque algo parecido viví cuando estuve en el “Submarino” de la cárcel de Valparaíso. Y concluye: “Los tres dibujos expresan el miedo a la tortura, era el miedo que reinaba en el aire”.

…”Los dibujos representan para mí no solo una parte dolorosa de mi vida, sino también una parte trágica en la historia de nuestro país que fueron las violaciones a los Derechos Humanos… La tortura que se hizo colectiva”.

Dibujos en prisión

Colección del Museo de la Memoria y los Derechos Humanos

Fund Mario Cordero Cedraschi*

Mario Cordero Cedraschi was born in the city of Concepción on December 27th, 1953. He remarks that as a child, the teacher at school would always call him out to the blackboard to paint with chalk the faces of the heroes in history classes, but explains that he never had an education in painting. In 1969, when he had just turned 15, he voluntarily joined the Chilean Navy. In 1970 he began a training cruise aboard the ship Esmeralda, who took him to Japan, Australia, New Zealand and other Pacific countries. On his return to Chile, a couple of months later, Salvador Allende assumed as president.

In 1973 and after obtaining the title of electrical engineer in the Naval Polytechnic Academy in the city of Viña del Mar, he is assigned to provide services to the cruise Prat, flagship of the national fleet. Within this unit, the Naval Intelligence Service (Servicio de Inteligencia Naval o SIN) was operating to detect those who opposed the coup against the government of Salvador Allende. All those who had loyal positions to the Constitution, were under observation. Mario tells how these events affected him: “As a result of situation, in July 1973, I requested through regular channels, an interview with the commander of the ship, Captain Maurice Poisson Eastman, asking him to dismiss me from service. I explained to him that I did not want to participate in a coup against the legally constituted government. The commander threw me out of his office calling me a ‘Marxist’.” At that time, Mario was a 19 year old young man… “I did not belong to any political party, nor did I have sympathy for any of them, it was rather a position of respect for the Constitution and the established laws of obedience to the highest authority of the country, which is the President of the Republic, and refusing to the idea of having to kill my own people.”

On August 6th, 1973, the commander of the ship, Captain Maurice Poisson Eastmann reported that some arrest of subversive sailors had been practiced in the port of Valparaíso. On August 7th, Mario met with other colleagues to inform the politicians at the port of Talcahuano about the imminent State coup and arrests that were taking place. Of his own arrest he says: “On August 8th, at about 22pm, in circumstances where I was carrying out my service duties, I was summoned to the office of the head of the Department of Engineering of the ship, to be conducted later to cabin, where Naval Intelligence officers were waiting for me, whit a colleague who had been already arrested. I was forced to disembark from the ship and they drove me up in a van of the Naval Base; the intelligence officer, threatening me with a gun, told me I was under arrest. The vehicle drove me to Fort Borgoño of the Marine infantry. There they handed me to the marine guard, where I was received by a battalion of Marines camouflaged and dressed for combat, which forced me to undress while hitting me with bayonets, rifle butts, kicks, knee strikes and punches, really giving me a treatment of a war prisoner […] There, I was victim of cruel torture and abuse: they would make me submerge, naked, into a barrel with sewage water, a kind of torture called submarine. They would put out their cigarettes against my body, hit me in the chest, stomach, back and buttocks with wet gloves, to the point that I fainted; they threatened me with death if I did not denounce colleagues  with constitutionalist positions, and so on it continued throughout the night until the next morning.” He was kept under arrest for nine days, isolated and under heavy armed protection, incommunicado, in the barracks of “Order and Security” at the Naval base of Talcahuano, subsequently being left in “free pratique”.

On September 1st, 1973, he is removed from the base and taken to the jail of Talcahuano, where he stays for a few days. On September 11th, 1973, Mario Cordero was at the prison of the city of Concepción, arrested with other sailors, on isolation conditions. After four months, he was transferred to the prison in Valparaíso, after a night in transit at the Penitenciaría de Santiago. In Valparaíso he was placed in a cell of the third gallery, with political prisoners. “In this jail, we were supposed to find the sailors who had been arrested at port of Valparaíso – Mario explains – and the feeling was that I would not be alone. The next day when the cells were opened, I began to ask political prisoners about the constitutionalist sailors and I found an atmosphere of distrust: nobody answered something concrete, some said that they had been taken to an island, others did not reply. Eventually they told me they thought we were from undercover intelligence service. The reality was that the sailors detained in Valparaíso had been transferred to Riesco Island (Melinka), in order to build, in forced labor, the concentration camp. During that period, communication with political prisoners was very difficult.”

Mario Cordero was subjected to an illegal process. The accusation that was originally formulated against him consisted of “failure to perform military duties.” On September 28th, 1973, this charge was changed and he was declared guilty for the crime of sedition and mutiny. In May, 1974 he was sentenced to three years in prison. He was released on August 28th, 1976, but remained under weekly supervision by Naval Prosecutor Office of Valparaíso. The three drawings in digital format that Mario donated to the Museum of Memory and Human Rights were done at the prison in Valparaíso. The materials used are charcoal pencil, black wax crayon and a block he had to write letters on. Regarding to how he got them he says: “These materials were brought by a family member. They didn’t give us any problems with having paper and pencils to write or draw, the problem was always the content of the drawings, which had to be protected.” Dates written in the drawings refer to the time and place of the events.

Regarding the meaning that these drawings have for him today, he says “they represent, in one hand, wanting to leave a mark, a mark in life. That is why several names of the constitutionalist sailors were hidden in the drawings, thinking they could eliminate us…The propaganda of the time, rated us as highly dangerous, experts in explosives, wanting to eliminate the high command of the armed forces, which end up, later on, being the inspiration of Plan Z on the part of the dictatorship…On the order hand, the drawings express what caused the most fear: the transfers. When you do not know where they are taking you, you always think the worst. When the cell door opens and the guard appears with a list of people to take away, your whole body tightens up. If it isn’t your turn, you stay with the terror of not knowing if the people they took will come back or if you are next. The other thing is when you hear the screams of the tortured and watch when they are being mistreated. In the prison of Concepción, gendarmerie arrived at night, to torture before our own eyes, the common prisoners who were punished in the cell, without light. Some, because of the anguish, would cut the skin of their bodies with whatever they could use, hoping that they would get sent to a hospital, instinctively demanding a human right, but gendarmes instead would pour salt with chili pepper in the wound, just for pleasure. Those were the tortures to which we were exposed, which are expressed in the painting of the first gallery, since I lived something similar when I was in the “Submarine” of the prison of Valparaíso. He concludes: “The three drawings express the fear of torture, that fear that reigned in the air.”

The pictures were taken out from the prison compound, in the lining of a corduroy jacket that I had at the time of being released. For Mario, they have a special meaning: “The drawings represent for me not only a painful part of my life, but also a tragic par in the history of our country, that were the Human Rights violations… The torture that became collective.”

“Dibujos en Prisión” 2014

pag. 100-101