On August 23rd, 1971, in the small Spanish village of Bélmez, a startling and unusual event began to take place. In the home of Maria Gõmez Pereira an apparition was forming on the kitchen floor. It was a human face. The features were distinct and almost mimicked the expressionist style of painting. Maria Pereira had no explanation for its presence and her first suspicions were that it was of paranormal origin. Six days later, in an attempt to destroy the apparition, the floor was ripped up and a new cement floor laid down. One week later another face appeared in exactly the same place. Bélmez is a small village where news such as this travels fast and very soon, the house was besieged by onlookers. Again, the Pereira family wanted to destroy the face, but the Mayor ordered it to be preserved. The face was removed from the floor and hung on the wall whilst the floor was dug up - it was felt that whatever was causing the apparitions must be beneath the floor, and it was well known that this village occupied ground that was once a graveyard. Nine feet down, human remains were discovered.
Two weeks after the new floor had been put down, another male face appeared. Another two weeks later, a female face appeared, this time with several smaller faces around it - nine to fifteen of them. This time, their development was observed by experts who were surprised to watch the shapes take form, almost in front of their very eyes. Many other faces formed, some very quickly, disappearing with equal haste - even over the course of a single day. Over time, the expressions appeared to change, get older and wizened. The faces did seem to be open to interpretation, both in their origin and their expression. Almost everyone who saw them, priest, psychiatrist, scientist, journalist, saw something slightly different in the features - was it irony, fear, shock, despair, happiness? Investigators made tape recordings whilst the house was unattended and locked. When replayed, the tapes contained inexplicable sounds of distant human wailing, whispering and crying.
All attempts the banish the faces failed - the floor was ripped up several times. Detergent and scrubbing seemed to do nothing but change the expressions and widen the eyes. Eventually, each face would disappear in its own time and apparently subject to its own laws of physics. Whilst the faces appeared like expressionist paintings, and were indeed hailed as masterpieces of paranormal art by eminent painters, it is unclear as to what actual pigments, paint or dyes were used. Chemists were unable to detect any elements in the faces that were not present in concrete and were at a loss to explain the existence of the faces at all.