It focuses on the lives of female ’Contrabandistas’, the so called Porteadoras at the Melilla border and a group of female marginated, moroccan immigrants in my neighbourhood in Barcelona. The methods to investigate about their weightfull circumstances is through living with them and composing songs while cooking, cleaning or during loose reunions at home. Composing songs that narrate about intimate lives is a tradition formerly relegated especially to Amazigh women of Northern Morocco and executed mainly in familiar contexts but also at weddings or other festive acts.
The projects does not pretend to be a reliable anthropological research but a chaotic collection of string narratives that do not distinguish between fabulation and report. Close ups in photography of faces were mainly avoided but a continuous practice of live drawings reflect portraits and gazes that were only possible in intimacy.
The following pictures reflect a 6 weeks visit and coexistence in Nador in the house of newly known women who earn their living with ‘trabando’. ‘Trabando’ is a combination of two Spanish words, trabajo (work) and contrabando (smuggle) and indicates the a-legal activity of transporting goods from Melilla to Nador that they are capable to carry with their bodies.
The investigation of this project is made possible especially by a grant from Barcelona Producció 2017/2018 and La Capella. It was also supported vitally by Jiwar, creació i societat, the artist residency in Marrakech Le18, Institut Ramón Llull and Nau Côclea in Camallera. You can have a regular update on the project through my Instagram account: schultz_and_more
One of these women is the Porteadora with whom i spent a couple of days. The other is her landlord of a minuscule room without windows and the third is a neighbor with a golden teeth and a crooked smile. The following portrait is hers.
In October the border was closed on Friday, Saturday and Sunday for the atipical traffic. Since I left, it is only open two days a week. Nadias, Hafedas and Luizas despair is overcome by cooking, singing and talking about not much.
This is how a Moroccan wedding looks from the backside. The garage is the kitchen and the kitchen where men will eat as invisible as possible. Stti and Fatima are between 60 and 80, neither of them knows her exact age, and manage the 28 shared plates going out for the guests. Fatima is the groom’s grandmother and Stti the neighbor. It’s a all women run heavy work which needs a lot of collaboration from neighbor to neighbor.
Nadia, contrabandista, she doesn’t like the word ‘porteadora’, gets up at 2h30 in the morning to wait sometimes 5 hours in the cue at the Melilla border until the door opens. When she comes back for lunch with a big smile on her face for her three small children and also for me, she has already spent about 14 hours awake.
The day I waited outside of the door of the barrio chino for Nadia to come out, I spend one morning together with Syrian refugees who waited anxiously for the gate to open and maybe take a chance to blend in with all the people, who once orderly in a cue, stream out like overfloating water, rolling or carrying their huge **bultos ** as fast as possible. I wouldn’t imagine at that point that I would see them all again the last day I decided to spend in a hotel instead of staying at Luiza’s. Here is Samira having a break from her multiple brothers, sisters and cousins and their fathers waiting here in Nador to follow their mothers who managed to slip through the Moroccan guards mostly disguised as Porteadoras. Morocco won’t let them pass to seek help at the CETI, the governmental center for war refugees.
Both of the travels were made by boat, minimum 25 timeless hours floating slowly and solemnly through a worldly waters, whose only frontiers were different telephone companies. The visit ended with the same women sharing the cabin with me who during my stay in Nador also shared her life with me.
As I said in the beginning, this is a multiple storytelling with many things to talk and think about. What of the freshly cooked material will be part of a multi branched piece I will know soon. Enshallah.
The Weight of my Neighbours is a project in process about the marginality and migration of my moroccan neighbours in Barcelona and at the Melilla border.
The project compares the meaning of objects imported from Spain and the ones bought by tourist in Marrakech.
A local spanish landline number. An add under SERVICES at the local newspaper. These are the traces of 2 lullybies texted, performed and registered for public use.
The Laboratory of Doing Nothing is a longterm artistic investigation on our tired working society through collaborative thinktanks, interventions and instalations.
A manifesto against work and the working society, declared in collaboration with Mar Merino.
This work is a telephone performance. A telephone ringing until someone picks it up. A fragmented narration on resistance, string theory and Bartleby the escrivener.
Decision with no Return or A Sense of Territory is a video and installation piece, an investigative detective story on the new relationship between England and Europe after Brexit.
Sala “X” PERRA PERDIDA is a guided performatic tour on loss, abandoned and forgotten. Presented in public in the context of the project “Perturbating Distribution” by Francesc Ruiz.
Do nothing is a instalation of a reading performance in a hammock and a series of nine fotographic prints.
A video, a vinyl and a singing performance for the research project “Lightning Studies - CTCCC” curated by Renan Laru-an for the Encura Grant by Hangar.org and Curator’s Network.
A youtubing performance on the artist mental power capacities and the veracity of the internet. In the framework of Liminal GR curated by Pilar Cruz and Marc Roig.
A daily non-action of doing nothing during 30 days. Made visible in a blogspace. The posts were generated simultaneously with Clara Garí.
“Limbic Love” was a multidisciplinary investigation on love in the framework of the exhibition “I don’t believe in you but I believe in Love” curated by Paola Marugán.
“Who is she” is a live cinema performance about blood in colaboration with the performer Carme Vinyas. It was presented during re-act feminism at Fundació Tàpies.
“Monstrous Desires” is a cinematic talk about hidden desires. Part 1 of a trilogy with graphic violence on gore subjects.
TrashfoodPorn is a quirky investigation on food and nurture. A talk, animation loops and melting sculptures. White bread is food. Sugar is Love.
Oma means grandmother in german. A film about work, love, gender and sex and a melancholic portrait of my grandmother. SoundMix by Parasythe Woman.
9 stop motion videoloops with 9 soundsamples. Made to combine randomly. Hard porn made soft. MusicMix by Lorenz Gneist.
These short movies were produced during 4 years and were never conceptualized. They are very pure and naif expressions of the will to communicate painful situations playfully.
A series of 6 oversized collages portraying childhood heroes. Idols and overcrowded references. All works are wooden framed.