Yesterday, on International Women’s Day, millions of women took to the streets of Mexico to protest the horrific levels of violence against women in the country. More than 4000 women have been murdered since 2015. Women marched and protested with their entire beings. Girls’ Globe members Diana and Lorena in Mexico raised their voices to share their pain with the world. Illustrator Laiza Onofre joined the rage and marched against femicides with her art.
Laiza, who has shared her fierce illustrations with Girls’ Globe for the past few years, used her art as a form of protest. Together with other designers, illustrators and publicists in Mexico, she helped create the platform undiasinmujeres.mx. They wanted to provide women all over Mexico with powerful visual messaging to use during the march on International Women’s Day 2020. I reached out to Laiza to ask her about using her art as a form of activism.
Julia: What made you want to share your art as a part of the International Women’s Day March in Mexico?
Laiza: Around the last few weeks, there have been femicides that have hit many of us straight to the heart.
Every day 10 women are murdered in my country and nobody seems to care.
It was out of that anger that I wanted to create and share these posters for the march. Protest art seems to me to have a very powerful role in the minds of people. There were a total of seven posters that I made – some with texts that speaks very directly to my country, my state and my locality.
Julia: What impact do you hope your illustrations will have around the city?
Laiza: I hope they can confront anyone who still cannot see the terrible reality in which Mexican women live. I hope my posters around the city, help them reflect on this reality.
Julia: What would you say to other artists who want to use their art as a part of their activism for human rights or gender equality?
Laiza: Believe in your work and do it from the heart. Remember that the personal is political and that it is very important to stay together.
The streets were full of protesters yesterday who were angry and tired of living in fear. Today, the streets of Mexico are eerily empty as women strike for a day without women. Some of the only remnants of the march is the art from the Mexican illustrator who marched against femicides. The illustrations continue to scream loud and clear. Enough is enough. No more violence. No more femicides in Mexico.