In the production of the From the Citizens to Their City, Katerina Duda presents the first segment of her artistic research project Statistički ljetopis/Statistical Yearbook. On 12 and 13 December, on a stall in Jadran Square in Rijeka, Duda will present passers-by with Rijeka tourism in figures, using the Korzo area as a background for data visualisation. Statistical Yearbook will tell us if tourism in Rijeka is on the rise, which services are used to advertise private accommodation and what proportion of advertising relies on Airbnb. They will tell us about the consumption of toilet paper rolls and cleaning agents or the number of towels, sheets and pillowcases, which will become units to measure tourist arrivals and overnight stays.
Vacation is a time when working people devote themselves to “what they want“, whereas cleaning ladies, laundresses and maids carry out the maintenance of tourist infrastructure in exchange for money: they clean rooms, change sheets and make beds, clean bathrooms, change towels and stock up on toilet paper, vacuum carpets and wash floors. The so-called women’s work, which is completely invisible in the household — in tourism, although undervalued, can still be quantified and made visible.
Thus Katerina Duda reveals that, according to the standards of one of the existing Rijeka hotels, a hotel with a capacity of 1154 guests, which corresponds to the number of daily tourist arrivals to Rijeka during peak season, should employ 39 maids. Each would be in charge of 15 rooms, but if some are on sick leave or have just resigned due to exhaustion, it could happen that there are only ten or less of them in the shift, which of course should not be reflected in the tidiness of the accommodation. In the country in which economy is increasingly reliant on tourism and the number of accommodation units is on the rise year after year, as well as the need for the ones maintaining this infrastructure, female seasonal workers are among the most vulnerable groups of female workers. The journalist Antonela Marušić points out that statistics on employment growth, record revenues and economic impacts, such as, for example, the share of revenues from tourism in national GDP, say nothing about the unenviable status and position of women in seasonal tourism work whose working rights are threatened due to the constant pressure of losing their jobs*.
On 12 and 13 December, from 10:00 to 16:00, come to Jadran Square and find out more. Talk to Katerina Duda, share your own experiences and contribute to the continuation of the research. Walk down the Korzo with the printed Statistical Yearbook in your hand and imagine that you are paving the way between beds prepared for tourists during peak season.