Yto Barrada is an artist of Morrocan origin who has worked for many years in Tangier, a urbanized border town influenced by the West. Her work is articulated around Tangier's territory and raises questions on the city's rapid infrastructural changes associated with economical development and real-estate speculation. Tangier, in a sense, is at the point of becoming a Moroccan Costa del Sol. "Le project du détroit," a work that has granted her international visibility, consists of videos and series of photographs, in attempt to describe a city of transit and in transition. For a considerable amount of time, Tangier was the gate to Europe that Schengen closed in 1991. A meeting point between Europe and Africa, the strait of Gibraltar became a "larger Morrocan cemetary" that refugees and asylum seekers used to cross from Tangier. Her work reminds one of documentary reporting, yet with a poetic vision, far from exoticism and spectacle. In her work, the city's inhabitants, or their traces, find themselves at the heart of her images.
Yto Barrada was born in Tangier in 1971. She lives and works between Tangier and Paris.