9 Mar, 2021 @ 21:58
1 min read

Far-right vandals target feminist murals across Spain in backlash against International Women’s Day

Feminist Mural Vandalized
Photo credit Circulo Podemos Ciudad Líneal

Far-right vandals have targeted feminist murals and monuments in several places across Spain in acts timed to coincide with International  Women’s Day.

In Madrid a mural depicting pioneering women including civil rights heroine Rosa Parks and artist Frida Kahlo had the faces painted over, while in Gandia in the Valencia region and Huelva in Andalusia, swastizas were daubed across feminist murals.

On Monday morning in the Madrid district of Ciudad Lineal, the faces of 15 feminist heroines were covered in black spray paint by a far-right group calling themselves Revolutio, a group that left a note describing feminism as “one of the bêtes noires of our era.”

Residents came out to show their disgust at the act of vandalism taping images of the women to the wall beneath their blacked out images.

The mural in the neighbourhood was a community project voted for in 2018 but faced against fierce opposition from right-wing parties, with Vox launching a campaign to have it painted over.

Alongside Rosa Parks and artist Frida Kahlo the artwork depicted American singer Nina Simone US, tennis champion Billie Jean King, and Guatemalan human-rights leader Rigoberta Menchú as well as several figures linked with communism and anarchism, including the Red Army sniper Lyudmila Pavlichenko and Comandante Ramona, a commander of the Zapatista National Liberation Army (EZLN) in Mexico.

The project’s creators said it represented women “from various backgrounds who overcame challenges, broke barriers and became reference points in the defence of women and equal rights.”

It was the third act of vandalism registered within the Madrid region in just a few hours: on Sunday, another feminist mural painted to commemorate Women’s Day in the nearby city of Alcalá de Henares was damaged while in Madrid’s Parque del Oeste a plaque honoring trans icon Cristina Ortiz, known as La Veneno was also vandalised.

On Tuesday, a feminist mural painted by the group Mujeres 24 Horas in Huelva’s Parque Moret ahead of Women’s Day was painted over with swastikas.

“This misogyny drives us, even more if possible, with arguments to continue to fight for our  rights, striving to get the place in the world that we deserve and serving as a loudspeaker for our voiceless comrades,” said Mujeres 24 Horas in the wake of the attack.

Last week, a mural  honouring feminist philosopher Simone de Beauvoir, Spanish intellectual María Zambrano and singer Violeta Parra was similarly targeted by vandals in Gandía, in the region of Valencia, who daubed it with swastikas and anti-feminist slogans.


Fiona Govan

Fiona Govan joined The Olive Press in March 2021. She moved to Spain in 2006 to be The Daily Telegraph’s Madrid correspondent and then worked for six years as Editor of The Local Spain. She lives in Madrid’s Malasaña district with her dog Rufus.

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