It’s Like She Had Never Existed: The Family Story and the Assembly of Disability

Ana García Jácome

  • Photograph of a girl in a field of flowers. She stands slightly bent forward with her arms a little open and looks at the camera with a fearful stare.
  • Collage of pieces of documents with Spanish text and black and white photographs. At the top is a header with a hospital logo and address. Below it on the left, a line reads, “Mexico, April 4, 1989.” The next line starts on the right: “Certificate of Impairment.” A third line follows with the name Georgina Jacome Guth. At the bottom left is a photo of adult Coquis in bed. At the bottom right is a photo of Mexico City and a file label.
  • Three black and white photographs in a row. They all show a young Coquis being held by arms and hands. The faces of the people grabbing her are cut out of the frame.
  • Color photograph of my grandfather standing inside a house. He is holding a video camera pointed at the photographer and smiling.
  • Color photograph of Ana holding a camera up to my face.
  • Scanned old folder from a medical magazine. It has two stamps, an address, a handwritten word crossed out, and the printed details of the magazine. On the top of the scan is a red handwritten note: “Papers of Georgina Jacome Guth, June 1962.”
  • Two photographs side by side. On the left is a black and white portrait of Coquis. On the right is a color portrait of me.

Jácome’s work explores how disability is conventionally represented and daily experienced, as well as the differences and gaps between these two. The leading threads of my work are disability and narratives. She is interested in contributing to a growing field that compiles the particular experiences of disability in the Latin American territories with languages and realities that are different from the ones that mainstream English-based disability studies portray. Her research focuses on her country, Mexico, and on the relationship between history and ways of seeing and naming: how we identify disability by visible markers, how we relate to it, how we name it, how the words and actions towards it have changed. The goal of her work is to raise awareness of how the words and actions perpetuate oppression, so that the need for counteractions in the everyday becomes clear.

Click this link to access Jácome’s full artist statement.

Ana García Jácome is a Mexican visual artist. She holds a BFA from the School of Arts and Design of the National Autonomous University of Mexico and an MA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC). She has been a grantee of SAIC, Fundación Jumex Arte Contemporáneo, and the Young Creators program of FONCA. Her work has been part of various exhibitions and screenings in Mexico City and Chicago.

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