The Traces
Pablo Briones

Domitila is an indigenous Peruvian woman who has been an undocumented domestic worker in Geneva for 20 years. When her daughter died a few years ago, she faced an unprecedented situation for her, i.e., economic hardship and extreme isolation because she spoke only Quechua and Spanish. Having reached the age of retirement but without any possibility of receiving a pension, she turned to a legal advice office with the idea of having her status as a laborer in Switzerland officially recognized. Following her consultation, she was advised to go back to her home country since the meager traces of her left in the official record by her employers were sorely inadequate to prove she had spent many years in Geneva. In the logic of the administrative state, Domitila remains then an abstraction. Pablo Briones paints a unique intimate portrait of her in which the social divides of Genevan society resonate.