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We are an association creating international art exhibitions showcasing the work of emerging artists.







Lucía Dalenz (+41) 76 285 5705 Geneva, Switzerland

Florence Goupil (+51) 963 424 148 Lima, Peru

Karenina Goitia La Paz, Bolivia

Gonzalo Sillerico La Paz, Bolivia

Simone La Porta Geneva, Switzerland

Enrico Nano Geneva, Switzerland

LATIN AMERICAN WOMEN IN INTERNATIONAL TRADE A photo exhibition at The World Trade Organization in Geneva, Switzerland from 2 - 4 October 2018 during the Public Forum 18 - «Trade 2030»

Latin American Women in International Trade is a project for the WTO’s Public Forum created by Art Shapers, an international association supporting emerging artists. Building on the 2017 Buenos Aires Declaration on Trade and Women’s Economic Empowerment, this exhibition seeks to increase awareness of the significance of gender-responsive trade policies for empowering women. Twenty-five photographers from Latin America were selected to showcase the challenging yet inspiring experiences of working women in Latin America.


The exhibition highlights the following: • Trade barriers disproportionately affect women in Latin America, emphasizing the need for a more inclusive trade policy to promote gender equality in developing countries. • Trade acts as a driving force for enabling women to grasp opportunities for economic independence and is a catalyst for change, helping to reduce poverty and enhance the quality of life within communities. • As the main producers of traditional cultural goods, Latin American women play a pivotal role in sustaining the continent’s cultural heritage. The trading of these goods is a cornerstone to ensuring the cultural survival of native communities. This exhibition has been made possible with the support of the World Trade Organization.

Carlos Pozo AlbĂĄn I Equals 2018 I Digital photography



Alicia has spent all of her life in the Argentine countryside, where she owns a field in which she grows crops and raises livestock. In Argentina, over 174 million hectares of land are used for agriculture, accounting for 7% of the country’s GDP. The presence of women in the countryside has become a major challenge within a context of economic migration from rural areas to the city and the increasing use of agricultural machinery and technology.


Peter Alex Rios I Quinoa 2018 I Digital photography

BOLIVIA In Bolivia, agricultural production is carried out at altitudes exceeding 4,000 metres above sea level. The high plateau, or altiplano, has an extreme climate characterized by periods of drought and intense frost. Quinoa is one of the rare crops that manages to thrive in conditions as adverse as these. Sabina, like many of the other members of the Aymara community in Oruro in Bolivia, produces

royal quinoa. When the time comes to prepare the ground for planting, she sets out very early with the tool she uses to work the land, with nothing other than a bag of coca leaves and dried potatoes to keep her going. Quinoa exports have been on the rise since 2001, with 90% of Bolivia’s total production currently being exported.

Sara Aliaga I A palliri from Sumaq Urqu

2018 I Digital photography



Justina is a female Quechua miner from the district of Potosí, in Bolivia. Since colonial times, Cerro Rico de Potosí has been a centre for mining activities. Where she lives, Justina is known as “Blanca” because her skin is impregnated with “copajira”, a powder from the mine that is dispersed whenever extracted stones are offloaded.

industrialized countries – leaves a large number of women widowed. Henceforth known as “palliri”, a Quechua word meaning ‘mineral retrievers’, mine workers’ widows comb through hundreds of tons of extracted rock remains from the Sumaq Urqu (Quechua for “Beautiful Mountain”), selecting rocks that may contain precious metals such as zinc and silver.

Large-scale artisanal mining operations are characterized by a lack of health and safety measures. Every year, the high mortality rate among miners – 90% higher than for miners in

Justina, the palliri from Sumaq Urqu, works full 24-hour shifts from Tuesday to Friday. In this time, she manages to fill approximately two trucks with the stones she has gathered.


Sofia Bensadon I Female brickworkers 2018 I Digital photography


In the cities of La Paz and El Alto, baked brick is the basic unit of construction. It is manufactured by hand in the Llojeta neighbourhood, where some fifty female brickworkers work. Within the production chain, the women are primarily responsible for the task of mixing the clay and water, for which they use their feet and shovels. Despite what may seem to be a rudimentary method of working, they are consistent in achieving the right degree of moisture, essential in creating a durable brick. The mixture is then pressed into moulds and baked inside a wood-burning oven. While a significant percentage of the brick production is for domestic consumption, bricks are also exported to Peru.

Anna Caroline de Lima I Maura and the chocolate farm 2018 I Digital photography


“Look at these fruits. There are no chemicals in them. It’s all naturally grown.” Maura fingers the cocoa trees in a small plantation at the farm where she works, in Bahia, Brazil. Cocoa arrived in Bahia in 1746 when a French settler sent seeds to a Portuguese farmer, who introduced them to his plantation in what is now the municipality of Canavieiras. The plants adapted well to the local climate and cocoa plantations spread throughout the region during the 19th century, with exports increasing in line with the demand for chocolate in Europe and the United States.

By the early 20th century, cocoa was Bahia’s main export, but everything changed when a fungal infection swept through the region. Known as Witches’ Broom, the fungus attacks only cocoa trees, and it deeply affected the region’s ecosystem, ravaging Bahia’s chocolate industry in the late 1980s and early 1990s. However, improved control of Witch’s Broom has since enabled Bahia to resume exports, which included shipments of 6,600 tons of cocoa beans to Europe in 2015.


Ana Mendes I Juçara

2018 I Digital photography



The juçara fruit (also known as açai) is a staple food for the indigenous peoples and traditional communities in the Northeastern part of the Brazilian Amazon. Juçara is harvested by women from the local communities using traditional methods, and owing to the proximity to the sea, is often eaten with fish or shrimps, but may also be eaten with meat and cassava flour.

Some 20 years ago there was an “açai boom” after an American dermatologist, Nicholas Perricone, presented the fruit as part of an anti-ageing diet during the Oprah Winfrey show. Following its rapid rise in popularity in many parts of the world, Brazil currently exports over 30,000 tonnes of açai fruit to the United States, Europe, Japan, Canada and the rest of the American continent.

Orlando AzevĂŞdo I Sisal in Bahia 2018 I Digitized analogue photography



In rural Bahia, female workers, warrior-like, display great fortitude as they work with sisal threads and wefts in a timeless process, the results of which are often destined for export. In the arduous process of selection and shredding, persistence and dogged determination is key. Ropes, with roots in a past empire, are woven in this way into history and collective memory.

Tadeu Vilani I Shrimp fishing 2018 I Digital photography



Rosimeri Aguiar is a descendant of the “quilombolas�, a community of mostly escaped slaves from mines and plantations who occupied territory in the Brazilian hinterland in the 19th century. She is one of the few women who are engaged in shrimp fishing in the Lagoa de Peixe National Park on the coast of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. The fishing season starts in the beginning of January and spans until the end of April. During this period, Rosemeri fishes almost every day.

Tui Anandi I Matsés

2018 I Digital photography



For the indigenous women of the Amazon, artistic creation is a key factor in the transmission of culture. This documentary photography was produced by Xapiri, an ethnic art gallery located in Cuzco, Peru. The Matsés people inhabit the Javari Valley, on the border between Brazil and Peru, which is located in one of the world’s remotest tropical rainforests. Despite their remoteness, fair trade enables these isolated communities to earn sustainable incomes. Xapiri has been developing long-term relationships with artisans from the Javari Valley region. Today, more than 80 craftswomen, as partners in the project, are working to preserve the Amazon culture through the fair trading of their native art.

Carla Borja I Woman and wine 2018 I Digital photography



Chile is one of the world’s top ten wine-producing countries, having bottled 9.5 million hectolitres in 2017. Wine is an important part of Chilean culture, and also ranks 16th in terms of the country’s exports. For a long time, however, wine-making has been the province of men, and any attempt by women to play a part in it remains a challenge, not least because their domestic

responsibilities limit their opportunities to dedicate themselves to oenology. Sofía has succeeded in opening a new chapter in the history of Chilean wine. “As women who are dedicating our lives to wine production, we are aware of the challenge this represents and of the positive change we are making for future generations”.


“Women of the sea” comprises a series of images captured at Caleta Portales in Chile’s main port city of Valparaíso. Fishing is a key source of income for people living along the Chilean coastline, which extends for over 4,000 km. Women are now playing a role in the fishing industry, most of them as part of a family tradition. For the women of the sea, the working day begins every morning at 4:30 a.m. While some of them are engaged in cleaning, fileting and selling the fish, others very patiently spend their time disentangling fishing lines and nets.

Estefanía Cubillos I Women of the sea 2018 I Digital photography


Laura Vega I Women working for a positive future 2018 I Digital photography



In 2017, Colombia became the eighth Latin American country to adopt an environmental policy – known in Colombia as “ReemBÓLSALE al planeta” – aimed at fostering the use of reusable bags. This approach was rapidly adopted by feminist movements, resulting in new job opportunities for women. In this photo essay, women of different ages take on the task of producing and marketing reusable bags made of Cambrelle fabric. This inclusive industry has successfully combined environmental protection with enhanced work opportunities for women.


The potato is a tuber whose origins lie in the altiplano of Peru. It was a basic food source of the Pre-Colombian civilizations and is today one of the world’s most widely consumed agricultural products. For producer communities, the potato, an integral part of Latin American identity, is the gold that grows in the earth. Colombia produces an annual 2.7 million tons of potatoes, most of which remains in the domestic market. Ninety thousand farming families are involved in this effort, with women accounting for 60% of the production process.

The 250 different varieties of potato to be found in Colombia generate some 230,000 direct and indirect jobs, and constitute the main pillar of the economy in BoyacĂĄ, NariĂąo and Cundinamarca. From sowing to marketing, women play their part in providing the market with the best possible potatoes and ensuring that the knowledge and know-how involved in their cultivation is passed on to future generations.

Lorena Velasco I Ode to the potato

2018 I Digital photography



Anna Caroline de Lima I (R)evolution 2018 I Digital photography

ECUADOR When the first rays of sunlight appear at the window, before even preparing breakfast for her family, María Dolores goes outside her house, at La Quebrada, Northern Ecuador, to burn some dry twigs to produce smoke. This is a traditional practice that

helps to prevent crops from being harmed by frost. “My grandmother taught me how do to it. You have to know which way the wind is blowing and must do it early in the morning”.

Neto Segovia I Coffee around the world 2018 I Digital photography



Coffee is grown on approximately 165,000 hectares of land in El Salvador. The boom began in the 1840s, when coffee production became the domestic economy’s dominant sector. Coffee plantations currently provide 72,200 jobs and the sector serves as the economic mainstay both for the country and for many Salvadoran women. While El Salvador’s fertile soil produces the Bourbon, Pacas and Pacamara varieties, most of its production is destined for the international markets.


Haniel López I Between roses 2018 I Digital photography

GUATEMALA “Between roses” is a documentary photo about the production of roses in Guatemala. Guatemala annually generates US$ 116 million for sales of roses abroad. In the production of roses, the cultivation requires skilled labour and delicate care, from its cultivation to its packaging. Currently, women of different age groups make up 80% of the sector.

The sale of roses is boosted by the annual celebration of Valentine’s Day, on February 14. The demand for flowers from the U.S., Guatemala’s main commercial partner, increases up to 300% during this time. Among other, the Netherlands, Germany, Canada, Japan and Honduras are recipients of Guatemalan roses.

NahĂşn RodrĂ­guez I Honduras carries the name of a woman 2018 I Digital photography



We do not know exactly for how many hundreds of years the Maya consumed tobacco, but it is likely that the indigenous peoples of Central America had been rolling tobacco leaves long before Columbus was born.

plucking leaves as the plants mature. Tobacco plants can grow to be between 90 and 180 cm tall. It takes more hours of work to grow tobacco than any other crop, requiring an average of 2,200 hours per hectare.

The tobacco plant is native to the Americas and, like potatoes, corn and chocolate, was destined to spread around the world. In Honduras, it is women who grow the crop, meticulously

From 2006 to 2011, tobacco exports totalled almost US$754.3 million and provided direct or indirect employment for thousands of Honduran women.

Florence Leyret I Fire under the sky 2018 I Digital photography



María Elvia Silva Bartolo is head of the Colectivo Cuanari, a cooperative whose name means “morning stars” in the Purépecha language. This Purépecha women’s cooperative makes smooth-finished pottery and hand-embroidered blouses, which it sells directly to Mexicans and foreigners at craft fairs. Its products are also marketed through resellers throughout Mexico and abroad. By working with resellers, the artisans have been able to make up for their lack of access to technology and unfamiliarity with the formalities required to export their handicrafts.

Lindsay Lauckner I Tequila 2018 I Digital photography



Melly Barajas Cárdenas, the ‘Queen of Tequila’, has built a distillery business with a workforce made up almost entirely of women. Raza Azteca was the first distillery that Barajas opened in the state of Jalisco. Being a woman in the tequila industry means a lot of hard work. “It’s a male-dominated world. When I started, people would say to me, ‘A woman in this industry? You won’t make it’”. Women take care of almost everything, from the agave fields to the cooking and fermentation processes. Cutting agave clearly takes significant physical effort. “Most men could do this faster. But it’s not something that women can’t do. It just takes a little more time”. Raza Azteca currently produces 100% tequila for three of its own brands – El Conde Azul, Espectacular and Leyenda de México – as well as for other companies such as La Gritona, Sino Tequila and La Quiere.

Allison Malpartida I Junkla, the woman behind exported bananas 2018 I Digital photography



Peru is one of the top ten exporters of organic bananas and accounts for 3% of worldwide production. In the banana industry, it is mainly men who are involved in production operations. In recent years, however, the gender gap has been closing. Women’s role in agricultural work is growing and their presence is no longer limited to packing stations.

Junkla Rojas Garrido’s story is an illustration of this. She is one of the few female members of Nomara, an association of organic banana producers located in the province of Paita in the region of Piura. She is not only a mother and grandmother, but also the owner of a banana plantation that supplies the international market with produce meeting high standards, such as those required for the Fair Trade label.

Ana Huerta I Physalis

2018 I Digital photography



In Huari, a town in the Peruvian region of Ancash, the soil yields good harvests of “aguaymanto” (Physalis peruviana) or, as it is known around the world, “goldenberry”. The demand for goldenberries has increased 85% since 2016. The national programme “Perú Berries” has taken on the task of providing advisory services to small producers like Feliciana Asencios so that they can meet the standards required in the global market. Peru currently exports goldenberries to more than 35 countries.


Florence Goupil I Sara, the spirit of maize 2018 I Digital photography


“Sara, the Spirit of Maize� is a photo documentary series about the Peruvian native corn, known as maize, and its connection with the Quechua elders of the Sacred Valley in Cusco, Peru. The figure of maize is essential for understanding the universe of the children of the altiplano, their relationship with the earth and their identity. Each species and all the sizes, colours and forms of the ear are related to a story, a meaning,

a specific use and a curative property. Ceremonies and even predictions of future harvests centre around ears of Andean maize. The native species has managed to survive the era of the Spanish conquest and the introduction of genetically modified seeds. The seed is native to Peru, and each year local women improve it naturally through a selection of grains based

on a Pre-Colombian method. Ears can have as many as 42 grains, each 2 cm in diameter. The species is known as giant white maize and, for the women, it is an expression of the earth itself. While a male figure, sometimes with dual sexuality, is used to represent maize in Mexico, in Peru maize is a woman. Her name is Sara, the spirit of maize.

Raul Rafael I Felicita

2018 I Digital photography



Felicita lives in Chinchero, Cuzco’s most important district for traditional Peruvian yarn-spinning and weaving. She takes care of her animals in the morning and, in the afternoon, makes yarn by passing sheep’s wool between her fingers and using a wooden wheel to make it finer. The yarn is then dyed using plants, roots and parasites such as the cochineal so that designs can be created on the skirts, hats and other accessories that will be sold in the city of Cuzco. International trade and, above all, fair trade have helped fortify the transmission and promotion of this cultural heritage. Quechua women artisans are at the forefront of the production of textile art, which forms the economic backbone of the region.

Uriel Montúfar I Kachi Raqa 2018 I Digital photography



The Salineras de Maras, or “Kachi Raqa” in Quechua, are salt mines in the region of Cuzco that have been in operation since the time of “Tahuantinsuyo” (the Inca Empire). Each parcel belongs to a family and is passed down from generation to generation, but the mines are operated communally. The salt trade is the primary source of income for the community of Maras. The mines are divided into 3,000 5m2 pits and form terraces or platforms on Qaqawiñay Mountain.

Women collect the salt using a traditional method. Salt water is fed into the pits and later evaporates under the intense sun, leaving thick salt crystals. After a month, they reach 10 cm in height and must be broken and ground. In this community, women play a fundamental role in transmitting ancestral knowledge on the operation of the mines and, especially, on how to operate them sustainably so that Maras salt will continue to make its way to the rest of Peru and the world.


Mateo Boffano I Cardal 2018 I Digital photography

URUGUAY Dairy is one of Uruguay’s largest industries. The department of Florida is the nation’s leading milkshed and where the most dairy products are produced. Most people in rural areas work in the industry, either directly or indirectly. Azucena is from Cardal, in Florida, and has worked in this sector since she was little; now her daughter Melanie works alongside her. They get up at 5 a.m. every day, round up the cows, milk them, then bottle the milk and sell it fresh. In the first six months of 2018, total receipts for Uruguay’s dairy exports amounted to US$ 293.1 million.

This exhibition was made possible thanks to the support of the World Trade Organization and the kind collaboration of all our friends, family, colleagues and artists involved. - Art Shapers team -

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