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Moira Zoitl

Babae / Women, Germany, 2005

Video, 9:58 min.

At the centre of this work stands Maria Teresa Hamto, one of thousands of Filipino women obliged to set out overseas to ensure the livelihood of their families. The grievance she conveys is the protest of women like herself, and she chooses to voice it in the urban shopping mall, a location where her outcry rings alien to its Western consumerist character.

In this work, the artist enfolds the tragedy that overshadows these women, and the countless families torn apart by the constraints of global economic policy. By way of their fate, we learn to comprehend the predicament of Third World countries that have forfeited their economic independence and control over their citizens, who set out across borders to secure their own livelihood and the upkeep of the children they leave behind.

This woman speaks on behalf of all those Filipino women we know, who live amongst us. We do not always grant them attention and proper treatment. They serve our daily needs, but are housed in places unfit for human habitation, so that the homes of others are kept perfectly squeaky clean.