The idea : "Retrats" by Pau Itarte and Quim Fuster.

the idea

When we were preparing our third documentary film, “Els últims vençuts, una història dels maquis”, we were lucky to contact with Llibertat Canela, a former fighter against Franco’s dictatorship, who was to be one of the main characters in our project.

At a meeting in her house, we met her son Lluís Gràcia, an schizophrenic patient, who told us about his artistic activities and gave us one of his books as a present.

At the beginning, we did not give it very much importance, but after reading his book, we realized that we had a very good story in our hands. Lluís was leading a painting workshop for mentally-handicapped people in Barcelona and he invited us to attend some of his lessons. We got very impressed by the experience and felt interested in studying the case in depth.

This is how we got in contact with several associations supporting mentally-handicapped people, such as Fundació Joia, ADEMM (Associació d'Usuaris de la Salut Mental), AREP (Associació per la Rehabilitació del Malalt Mental) and FECEFAMM (Federació Catalana de Familiars de Malalts Mentals). All of them helped us to face the project better and, above all, they explained to us that the best way to achieve these people’s recovering was to make them do activities in which they were the main characters so that they could gain more autonomy and independence.

Quickly we started to work with AREP in order to get a group of people willing to develop a project of this nature and to organize a painting workshop so that we could create a documentary showing the experience.