Today, Gabriela would have celebrated her 41 years old. On behalf of all your friends and fans, dear sister, I wish you a great birthday. We all miss you. We feel blessed to follow your path, reading your great novels.
In addition, we are particularly touched by the tragic events which stroke Paris yesterday. You used to live close to ‘Place de la Republique’, where took place several of the attacks. I am sure you would have been part of the first artists and intellectuals denouncing these bloody attacks against France, and more generally freedom and peace.
We are part of your fight and will never bow to the terror, dictatorship and ignominy.
I am currently working on the photographs I have taken in Antarctica. A lot of work. As my friends ask me often to show a sample of my work, I post today a first image of my project. These are air bubbles which have been confined in the ice sometimes for the last tens of thousands of years, sometimes hundreds of thousands of years. I have photographed these air bubbles on Potter Cove, evoking the fragility of life, as a tribute to Gabriela. Separated by dictatorship, we have never met.
The life on Carlini Base is amazing. A special mixture of army rules (fixed schedule) and wild adventure (being in the middle of nowhere). We went yesterday on Fourcade Glacier for a ride on the ice with snowmobiles.
I am not sure to write a lot on my blog while being here. As I have a lot to experience and accomplish.
My art project is doing well. I work on the air bubbles captured in the ice. I have filmed some Gentoo Penguins yesterday. I think the Internet connection is OK today, in order I can post a pic.
Tonight, we party with the scientists and soldiers of the base: Argentinian pizza and asado!
On February the 9th, I have been unable to post something about the anniversary of Gabriela’s death. Because the Internet connection was out of order.
In the meanwhile, I have worked on my art project here, as a director and photographer. My tribute to Gabriela. I have lately shot these amazing Sea Elephants, which were on the shore, at the foot of Fourcade glacier.
I write this post from Carlini Base, in Antarctica, thanks to a limited Internet connection. I won’t be able to post any of my photographs, only these few words.
I feel very moved to be in the very place where was my sister Gabriela Conti, before the departure of the ‘2048 Expedition’.
The weather is really bad today, and the sea rough. We will celebrate tonight the 4 years of the arrival at South Pole of the expedition. On February the 9th, we will celebrate the 4 years of the death of Gabriela.
I am very moved today to share with you some family archives I have just received. Jules Nancy, Gabriela’s widower, has just sent them here, thanks to a friend of him who was traveling to Argentina.
Less than 3 months after having discovered my true identity, I can finally watch and touch these objects and pictures, which belong to my real family: the French maternal family (Duval, from Paris) and the Argentinian paternal family (Conti, from Córdoba).
I have taken these precious objects in picture yesterday. A lot of documents are quite old. Gabriela kept them when she left Argentina during the economical crisis.
Now, I know the past. Which I keep vivid inside me. These objects belong to my family. To have them with me (before sending them back to France for an upcoming exhibition) allows me to feel my roots and to believe in my future.
It was under the Argentinian dictatorship. I was 5. I was living in the Barrio of Villa Crespo. At that time, my name was Gloria Medina. I was a beautiful fairy, but everything was fake: my parents, my identity, my name, my story.
I am very moved by this picture. Gabriela is almost 3. It is in October 1977, under the Argentinian dictatorship. The photograph is Javier, Gabriela’s father. It takes place in the kitchen of the family house in Nicaragua Street, Buenos Aires (Barrio de Palermo). Soon before, our mother was kidnapped. Soon after, Gabriela was sent in exile in Paris.
Today, I wish to share 2 pictures of the year 1980.
These two little girls photographed in 1980 were sisters. One was living in Argentina, the other in France. Because of a dictatorship, they never got the chance to meet.
The first picture is me, in 1980. I am almost 3. The place is a vacation house close to Mar del Plata. At that time, my name was Gloria Medina. During the next 30 years, I have been fully unaware that my ‘parents’, Juana and Ramiro Medina, were close collaborators of Argentinian dictatorship, and responsible for my mother’s death and my sister’s exile. I was raised as a single child.
The second picture is Gabriela, in 1980. She is almost 6. The place is a vacation house in France, in ‘Ardeche’ region. At that time, Gabriela was in exile, raised by our maternal aunt as a single child.
On July the 25th, I went to the Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo (Grandmothers of May Square). On September the 29th, I discovered my new identity.
It’s all very confusing and I have a strange feeling. I’m not the one I was. It will take time to understand it all, and especially to take everything that happened to me.
Thank you Gabriela for doing the DNA test. It is through this that I found out you were my sister, and a new life begins for me.