The woman captured in the first photograph sits in perfect harmony with her environment, content, looking forward to the future full of life and brio. She was living in a small house full of misery and I tried to make her life a little better. After 4 years in the same place I built a house for her, we call it the T.A.M.A. House. The owner of the T.A.M.A. House is Kyriakoula, my best friend in T.A.M.A. and also the guide of the Museum. Her dream for the last 17 years was to live in a real house. What I did was to make the dream come true. We occupied a piece of land and we started to build a house without any permission. Everything is illegal: the land, the house, and the construction workmen. [...]
I am finally under the impression that urban and constructive illegality cannot be equated with a revolutionary act, since it supports a value system which works within the existing state of things. […] However I will continue to insist that the spontaneous housing constructed by communities that live near the poverty line can be seen as a sort of distorted critique of capitalism’s ability to create social injustice and extremes. […]
If we generally say that a home is the mirror of its dweller, then the home of a nomadic family in Avliza is also a mirror of the world we live in.
Excerpts from “T.A.M.A. House,” in Mapping the Invisible: EU Roma Gypsies, p. 139.