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A neighborhood pierced by art

The German collective Mamaza penetrates into houses and commercial premises to connect with a red line two districts of Madrid

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Selina Losa, Madrid, door opener. On Friday he negotiated with John Gutiérrez, an Ecuadorian based in Spain and a consultant in one of many immigration law firms in UserA neighborhood, second with highest percentage of immigrants from capital (especially Chinese and Latin American). Selina explained to her that she needed to get into back office of her place to stick a piece of duct tape on floor. "It's an artistic project." To connect neighborhood with slaughterhouse. Do you know slaughterhouse? The conversation lasted a few minutes, followed by Pasmo by clients of office, until finally lawyer responded kindly: "Sure, of course, come in."

Since last Thursday, Selina helped Ilan Kav and Johanna Milz, members of Mamaza German choreographer collective, to traverse UserA. Traverse in literal sense of word. Its purpose, framed in its project Asingeline (read to single line, a single line), is to draw a line with a red insulating tape from this district to cultural complex slaughterhouse. There can be no twists, no bends. That forces m to get into all kinds of buildings (restaurants, bars, shops, commercial offices, homes, interior courtyards), cross roads and even jump river Manzanares. They need a "door opener", Selina, who dominates Castilian. After six days y plan to arrive this Tuesday at ir destination. It'll be a little over a mile.

A map of European contemporary scene

Mamaza's intervention is part of sample that is held every year in Spain by Be Festival of Birmingham. Since its creation, in 2010, this competition selects projects of European emerging artists that develop new scenic languages. Among those chosen for ir exhibition in Birmingham each summer festival chooses a few to show m in fall in Madrid, Lekeitio, Vitoria and Pamplona. The PRÓXMO weekend is represented three in atre of Abbey of Madrid: Vacuum, of Swiss choreographer Philippe Saire; Palmira, atrical spectacle of Frenchman Bertrand Lesca and Greek Nasi Voutsas; and What Does Stuff Do?, a kind of circus masterclass of British Robin Boon Dale. A sample of where European contemporary creation is going.

It's not always as easy as in John Gutierrez's law firm. "Sometimes it takes us hours to get permission to get into some places." But that is precisely aim of this work: to provoke dialogue, to know inner life of neighborhoods, its rules, what happens inside houses. "So harder, better," said Ilan Kav to El PAÍS on Friday. "By way we seek to arouse interest in contemporary art." Or at least curiosity. In fact, project was born in 2011 to connect a district of Antwerp with a ater that was close but was very foreign to its neighbors. In Madrid same happens between UserA and slaughterhouse. Our red line is, in some way, a red carpet that invites you to travel that route, he added.

And what is UserA's inner life? Walking Street, many shops and restaurants run by Chinese, Asian or Latin American food shops, immigration lawyers, travel agencies with cheap flights to Bolivia and Ecuador ... "There is usually no problem in business premises." There have been some difficulties just because of language. "There are many first-generation Chinese who don't speak Spanish," says Selina. "In houses we find everything." Immigrant floors inhabited by several families who open door without hesitation, a Brazilian family that ended up giving us a concert, people from neighborhood of life, an Asian girl who was sewing beautiful embroidery, he summarizes. This is reality of UserA.

The restaurant spoon crossed red line. CLAUDIO ÁLVAREZ

The group, which is always accompanied by a camera to record everything that happens, is scheduled this Monday to reach river Manzanares. They are not worried about crossing it, considering that three years ago y traversed Venice. Only in two of cities where Mamaza has drawn its red line (Frankfurt, Lausanne, Haifa (Israel), Lagos, Maputo, among ors) has been some hole: in a suburb of Johannesburg and Birmingham (for refusal of an HSBC bank office). Madrid have been invited by slaughterhouse ships, within tour that every year is made by Europe Be Festival of Birmingham. When y arrive at ir destination on Tuesday afternoon, Café de Naves slaughterhouse, a video will be presented that collects summary of how plot has been made (it will continue to project every day in that space until January). There y have promised to be Asian embroidery, Brazilian family and or UserA inhabitants who found along way.


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