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JOSEFINA #24: NOEMÍ OLIVA, DEPUTY DIRECTOR OF THE CLUB MATADOR IN MADRID AND MOTHER OF JON

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Noemí Oliva

JOSEFINA #24

Noemí Oliva is the Deputy Director of the Club Matador in Madrid and mother of Jon.

Graduated in Psychology, Noemí decided to change the course of her life, seeking new paths through the world of art and culture. So far, she has developed many artistic projects in different countries as a cultural manager.

Graduated in Psychology, Noemí decided to change the course of her life, seeking new paths through the world of art and culture. So far, she has developed many artistic projects in different countries as a cultural manager.

She is now Deputy Director at the Club Matador which aims to generate cultural debate.

Globetrotter, dreamer and optimistic, she recently gave birth to her little Jon with who she is discovering the new joys of Motherhood.

She is our Josefina of the month.

Noemí, you are Deputy Director at the Club Matador in Madrid, could you tell us more about your job and the concept of the club?

The Club comes from the international well-known Matador magazine. This magazine was born to build cultural debate and will come to its end next 2022. Each issue, which is a letter of the alphabet, has a main topic. The latest, The U issue, was dedicated to El Prado Museum. The Club aims to continue the magazine spirit focusing on culture and its many disciplines. We plan a wide variety of activities, including conversations with relevant people from the worlds of art, film, theater and music; cinema screenings; music shows; performances; contemporary dance; courses and so on. The gastronomy proposal is very attractive as well. We have the best cocktails in town, a great restaurant with Spanish traditional delights and a secret place to enjoy called Clandestino. I mostly take care of the cultural schedule, the day-to-day work is really dynamic and exciting, the feedback is
normally grateful and developing the program is always a challenge.

You have been traveling all over the world. When and how did you decided to make art your profession?

Although I have been working as cultural manager for a long time and in different countries, I never forgot that my initial professional education was in Psychology. Once I finished my Bachelor’s degree, I tried to mix Art with Psychology in a PhD without success. At that moment, I had to make up my mind to work in other directions which have plenty of substance for me. I very much wanted to fit culture in my work, so finally I found in cultural management the perfect frame.

Where do you find your inspiration?

I’m interested in other views and perspectives capable to open my way to see things. I try to attend, as much as I can, contemporary art activities like exhibitions, biennials and art fairs.
Dance and performative arts are other languages that delight me, I empathize quickly with the actions on the stage.

What is your definition of elegance? Do you have a style icon?

From my point of view elegance is a natural and graceful way of behaving, it is intrinsically related with personality. It appears in little details, in the way the person moves, feels and also creates. I don’t have a clear style icon, but thinking about it two names have come easily to my mind, Charlotte Gainsbourg and Sylvie Guillem.

 

How would you describe your style? What’s your favorite piece in your wardrobe?

Minimalist, monochrome frequently, a combination of masculine and feminine, formal and informal. I normally wear loose clothing, I like the movement of smooth textures. I have become increasingly exacting with regard to the materials and fabrication. White high waisted trousers or black jeans are indispensable pieces of my wardrobe.

Noemí, you just became a mum for the first time, how do you manage to balance motherhood with your work, your partner and friends?

I´m in the learning process right now! It is hilarious how you imagine yourself as a mother and how you do behave as a real mother. I have a structured, persistent and resilient personality that´s why I thought I would behave as a mum in the same way. Surprisingly, I am experiencing the weakest and sweetest moment of my life, being a mother has broken entirely my mental patterns. Nevertheless, from the beginning I try to add Jon to my plans, not easy sometimes but fulfilling.

What do you like the most about being a mother?

The communication between Jon and me, it is unique. I started to speak with him from the beginning, even in the pregnancy. After the first month I realized that he tried to communicate with me through sounds, looks and movements. Each day is improving a little bit so I am totally stunned, we spend hours with these little talks.

How did pregnancy affect your style? How did you dress? Do you have any tip?

It was easy for me because I normally wear ample clothes, there were dresses and shirts that I wore until the end. My advice is to continue being yourself, to buy clothes that can be worn after pregnancy, just one or two sizes larger, that’s enough, after pregnancy you can always customize them.


 

What are your favorite spots in Madrid? (with and without kids)

My selected spots in Madrid are:

Taberna Ardosa for the traditional Spanish delights, I suggest to ask for the tortilla de patata and the salmorejo. I usually try hard to get the round table next to the window, you can enjoy at the same time in inside and outside malasaña area mood.

Pomme Sucre, I haven’t tried yet a better dark chocolate palmera.

Levadura madre, a fantastic bakery where I finally found one of my Brazilian fav things, pão de queijo and Hot now for creative and succulent pizzas.

Sr.Ito, the first Japanese restaurant that doesn’t look like a Japanese restaurant. They have a great Monday to Friday menu and tasty and creative bites for dinner.

Sacha, my most-liked restaurant. It is run by Sacha Hormaechea who you might trust from the beginning, no need to see the menu. But, don’t forget to ask for the truffle omelette and the fake lasagna.

Besides our great museums, I enjoy very much the photography exhibitions at Mapfre foundation, some galleries which have interesting proposals like Twin Gallery, Travesía 4 and Ivorypress. Canal to see contemporary dance, and Teatro Pavón to see nurturing theatre performances.

My preferred place to take Jon is the botanical garden. I like to walk in this natural space in the middle of the city and take advantage to see the exhibitions.

What place would you recommend for a child-friendly vacation?

I have discovered recently Lanzarote, a Martian and exotic island in Canarias. You will find out that is a perfect match to share with your children. There are many plans to enjoy together: wild beaches, imaginative architectures from Cesar Manrique, charming little towns, wineries, the volcano Timanfaya…

Which JOSEFINA do you have and why did you choose it?

I have the Josefina black medium. It is perfect for my everyday with Jon, indispensable to travel and amazing for me whenever Jon doesn’t need it. It fits completely with my style.

What does your JOSEFINA bag contain? Do you use it more for work or baby’s items?

Right now my Josefina bag is dedicated to the plans with Jon. It contains baby´s clothes, nappies, baby change, toys, pacifier, muslins and some personal essentials like the sun glasses, the wallet, lipstick and hand cream.

Who inspires you as a mum? In what way?

My grandmother, Waldestrudis. She brought me up like her youngest child after three children. She was one of a kind, a genuine woman, very traditional with a distinct and “typical Manchego “sense of humour. She was a real fighter with a strong character (which I have inherited), the head and the heart of the family without any doubt. I have learnt from her to try hard to achieve my goals because it works! I will try to pass this attitude to my kids. This and the bizcochada, a traditional dessert from La Mancha, where I belong.