Monday, September 20

Almeida’s small print to rebuild the feminist mural of Ciudad Lineal: veto citizen collaboration


The work to rebuild the vandalized feminist mural in the Ciudad Lineal district on March 8 began after almost six months in black. To rebuild the work, which pays tribute to great women in history, the Government of José Luis Martínez-Almeida has once again commissioned its restoration to the original authors, the collective Unlogic Crew, who have been working since Sunday to return the mural to its original state. To do this, the local corporation has resorted to a minor contract that includes a curious clause: “The successful bidder must carry out the works by his own means without in any case being able to seek citizen collaboration.” No intervention by the neighborhood or by the groups that in recent months have turned to cleaning up the mural as soon as possible. The authors wanted to involve all those who defended the mural in its reconstruction, but it will not be possible.

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From the municipal government sources of Citizens, on whom the presidency of the Ciudad Lineal district falls, justify the clause by ensuring that it is “quite frequent.” And they add: “If not that same clause, a similar one.” According to these same sources, it is included “because the one who has the contract awarded is the one who must execute it, not a third party, in this way he then justifies its execution and is paid.” elDiario.es, however, has checked other minor Madrid City Council contracts, and none of those consulted includes a clause like this.

The painting has become a symbol of feminism, to the point that it has become replicated on walls throughout Spain, since Vox put her on the target when she achieved that, in an agreement in the district plenary session of Ciudad Lineal, Ciudadanos and PP vote in favor of an initiative that asked to be deleted. The formation that Begoña Villacís leads in Madrid ended up rectifying and in the municipal plenary session they already voted against its deletion. But the Vox statement – which even made it to the pages of the foreign press – had already made a dent and on March 8 – International Women’s Day – He woke up vandalized with the faces of the honored women painted black.

Almeida then promised to restore it during a ceremony for Women’s Day in which he called his government “feminist”. But the work for its reconstruction has been long in coming. It took almost half a year for its reconstruction to become a reality. The original mural, a germ of up to 60 later copies, is the only one of the three attacked in March that had not yet been restored. In Getafe and Alcalá de Henares the work was lighter.

From this Sunday, the five artists that make up Unlogic Crew they scrape the wall to remove the black stains and recreate the iconic work from scratch. As stated in the contract, the works will run from August 22 to 29 for an amount of 14,900 euros, VAT not included.

In the justification of the minor contract, the regional government refers to an agreement of the municipal plenary session on January 26 after an urgent motion by Más Madrid that obliges the Madrid City Council to develop “the necessary actions to preserve and maintain the actions developed by the General Directorate of Cultural Heritage within the framework of the Compartiendo Muros program, especially the one carried out in the Ciudad Lineal District for the promotion of gender equality “. It was the agreement with which those of Rita Maestre – thanks to the votes this time from Ciudadanos and also from the PSOE – prevented the Vox initiative from only five days before to eliminate the mural from prospering.

Almost six months after it was vandalized, the District Board has signed the minor contract, which does not require a competition or award process. The push towards restoration came just a few days after a demonstration by the residents of Ciudad Lineal in front of the Palacio de Cibeles, the seat of the municipal government. As the artists recently told this newsroom, the collective Unlogic Crew I was in talks with the feminist and neighborhood associations that defended the work tooth and nail, through mobilizations, to repaint together a neighborhood mural that has become an icon of something much greater. The fine print of the contract, however, prevents it.



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