Cristina + Gabriela I and II
90 x 60 centimeters each

"Lugar Común (Common Place) is a joint project by the Colombian artist Ruby Rumié and the French-American artist Justine Graham. The topic is the relationship between Latin American housekeepers and their employers, exploring issues of gender, power, class, and race. Made up of photographs, videos, and interviews with one hundred women between the ages of 19 and 95, the project combines art and sociology, seeking to dismantle the hierarchical relationship between these women."—International Biennial of Contemporary Art Foundation of Cartagena de Indias



"Work relationships within the domestic sphere in Latin America often generate ambivalent allegiances, since they involve feelings of affection and, in some cases, guilt. Because these emotions evolve within the intimate setting of a family to which the domestic worker does not belong, this professional dynamic is particularly complex.? In this light, these homes that double as work spaces become vulnerable places, because they set the stage for delicate relationships that must negotiate between physical proximity and social distance.


"Lugar Común was conceived as a way to give new visibility to this professional connection, of employers and employees, within the domestic realm. Between 2008 and 2010, 100 women in three Latin American countries (Chile, Colombia, and Argentina), participated in this project.


"In the interest of underscoring the individual qualities of each woman and breaking down hierarchical relationships, a formal framework for the photographic documentation was established: the same white T-shirt, distance, lighting, posture, and backdrop. Through these parameters, the project seeks to reveal both similarity and diversity, with no external classifications.?


"Placing these women face to face in pairs, challenges the conventional notion of the portrait, giving both women the same visibility and defying the stereotypes prevalent in our existing social structure."—J.G.