The photozine contains portraits and testimonies of women who attended the vigils for the vote on the law legalizing abortion in Argentina in December 2020, from the first minute to the final vote. A memory of these nights, of these long waits and of decades of struggles.
The photozine is closed by a blue thread, which is the color of people against the law. Once you open the thread, the zine can expand itself. Each night of vote is a booklet, bound by a unique cover that closes and preserves like a treasure, this diversity of voices. Espera(nza) is a mix of “ Espera” ( wait) and “Esperanza “ ( hope).
On December 30 2020, I stood on the streets of Buenos Aires holding my camera. Even though witnessing historic events is part of my profession, to live the coverage of the voting of the abortion legalization law as just another coverage was impossible. I also stood there for myself, as a female citizen, inhabitant, and comrade.
For two nights of vigil, my heart was divided between feeling fortunate to be contributing to the collective visual memory of this moment, and the desire to be really there, lying on a sidewalk, exchanging the camera for a beer and watching the giant screen like a thriller, surrounded by an audience with the same pulse, as one senator appeared on it after the next.
I felt I needed to find a space of my own, a simple and intimate way to meet my peers, to vibrate together, even if it was just for a couple of minutes. I decided to take portraits of women and diversities that I met along the way, from the first minute of the vigil to the vote. I had short conversations with them based on three questions: How long have they been waiting for this moment, what does the legalization represent and what would I say to those who are on the other side, against it.
In the early morning of December 30, as the count progressed, I rarely felt my body so weak, my legs on the verge of failing at the moment of THE photo. My emotion grew at the thought that “this is happening”, that the world, my world and the world of many was going to change in one second. One fragile and powerful second that ended the long nights and long decades of waiting and struggle.
Book Specs: Espera(nza) by Anita Pouchard Serra | Publisher Anita Pouchard Serra | Year 2021 | Pages  | Dimensions 10 x 15 cm | Cover Paperback | Binding Accordion | Process Offset Printed | Language English + Spanish. Available here.
Anita Pouchard Serra is a French-Argentinian visual storyteller working on stories that cross her personally, connected with current societal issues like identity, migration, women’s rights with a transdisciplinary approach.
Her work has been supported by the Pulitzer Center, the IWMF, Open Society Foundations, National Geographic among others, published in The New York Times, Bloomberg, Le Monde, Washington Post and exhibited worldwide.
She is also a visual storytelling teacher and lecturer.