Measures:15 pics, 40 x 60 cm, each

African slavery in Colombia began in the first decade of the sixteenth century. The Afro-Colombian slaves fought for their freedom from the beginning of their arrival to the country.

In the impenetrable jungle landscape of the Choco, African villages called "palenques" (pillars) were soon established. This is where slaves fled to escape their oppressors. They called themselves cimarrones (meaning runaway pet). These isolated communities developed their own socio-cultural ethics: respectful treatment of the environment and upholding social values such as peace, friendship and solidarity always remained more important than money and profit maximisation. For centuries, they lived as a "forgotten" part of Colombia.

The dense rainforest, the complex ecosystem, the wealth of natural resources and the preservation of their traditions and culture were not enough to enable the people of the region to achieve social advancement. Corporations plundered the wealth of natural resources and forests, leaving the people behind in extremely poor living conditions. In addition to the massive social problems that have arisen and continue to arise, there are now also the atrocities of armed conflict. The once safe palenques have become strategically important military targets - people are forced to flee. Armed groups, especially paramilitary units, are terrorising the population and committing countless massacres. Control of the Rio Atrato, the main traffic route for drug smuggling but also the lifeline of the Choco, is at stake.

Faced with all these attacks on their culture, their values and their lives, the Cimarrones have nevertheless retained their dignity. They are the proud African heart of Colombia.