On March 17th I was at the opening of the exhibition of the photographic movement #NoMeMiresLeeMe (Don’t look at me, read me) at Fabrica Technology Space, where I met Giovanna Michaliadis Sarty, the curator of the exhibition. Giovanna met Camila Puerto and her work in 2022 at the Transit Festival X in Holstebro, Denmark, was impressed and, wanting to support the movement, she brought it to Greece.

This #NoMeMiresLeeMe photo movement was born on March 8, 2020, when a collection of 33 photos was shared on social media (Instagram and Facebook) in protest of gender-based violence in Mexico, where femicide rates reach 10 a day. Its creator Camila Puerto, born in Colombia and raised in Mexico City, is an actress, director and designer.

On the occasion of meeting and participating in the #NoMeMiresLeeMe (Don’t look at me, read me) photography movement, I contacted Camila Puerto from Mexico to learn more about this initiative.

#NoMeMiresLeeme “Dad, your blows to mom left splinters in my heart.” Conchi León Actress, Playwright, Writer, Director Mexico Independent Artist Photo by: Camila Puerto Published in March 8th, 2023.

In your artwork #NoMeMiresLeeme you use the female body as a canvas for your message, what was the trigger for it?
Our bodies are receptors of the violence we as women live every day. I am not only referring to physical violence; there’s fear, there’s anger, there’s discomfort, that manifests through our bodies. I wanted to give our bodies the chance to speak, yell, heal, and protest.

#NoMeMiresLeeme “Women are a beautiful bird that dies because of cages. I am not a doll nor merchandise for slavery. Freedom of thought, Mental release, Body liberation.” El Khanssae Chahmoti Actress Morocco Troop FESTI Self Portrait Published in March 8th, 2023.

Also, I wanted to provoke a confrontation with the sexualization of the female body. The name of the movement means:

“Don’t look at the body in the picture. Don’t look at the woman in the picture. Read what her body has to say.”

#NoMeMiresLeeMe “I’m drowning in patriarchy” Evita Paraskevopoulou – The Femina Story, Greece Photo by: Evangelos Karalis Published in March 2023

Did you find any obstacles in your country when you started your project and if yes how did you manage to overcome them?
The movement began on social networks, so we were able to share all the photographies without troubles or censorship. We didn’t face any significant obstacles. Not all people liked semi-nudity on the photos, but that wasn’t relevant for us not to do it.

Your artwork became a photographic movement against gender violence. How many females have participated until today and in which countries? Fortunately this was an idea that caught the hearts of many women since the beginning. When the movement began on 2020 we were 40 women artists (actresses, photographers and make-up artists), and during that year, about 20 more women from different states of Mexico joined too. I worked to make it grow globally. In 2022 I had the chance to share this photos in Denmark and Germany during two Women International Theatre Festivals were I met many other women who joined too. On March 2023, 30 new women joined from Iran, Ukraine, Argentina, Taiwan, Mexico, Germany, Italy, Colombia, Ghana, Greece,

Romania, Kurdistan, UK, Morocco, USA, Portugal, Austria, France and Canada.

What is the impact you want to see with your project #NoMeMiresLeeme and will there be a next step?
I want this movement to grow even more, that women from all around the world join this way of protesting. During this month I’ve seen a Video Performance, a Song and a Performance derivate from the photographies. I would love to see this movement mutate into other works of art, because each one of us has something important to say that might help another woman suffering any kind of violence. So I invite any woman who reads this, to make her own photo or work of art and share it using the #NoMeMiresLeeme. My inspiration to keep this movement going are you.

#NoMeMiresLeeme “I am not your exotic animal.” Marisa Paulo Nurse and Performer Angola / Portugal Independent Artist Photo by: André Soares Published in March 8th, 2023.

In Athens, you have the opportunity to get to know it and participate until the end of the year at the Patio of Technochoros Fabrika (125 Megalou Alexandrou Alexandrou Street, 10435, Athens).