An artist in Barcelona

We are outside on a small street in Gracia, the screen is fixed, we are looking into a little cafe where we can see people sitting inside and others walking by. The music is cheerful, but instrumental, some swing tone. One guy with a fixie bike, a girl with a dog on a leash. There is calm but happy music in the background – Regina Spektor style – and the sun is shining. It gives us a feeling of a calm Sunday afternoon when you stroll to the market or a cafe to hang out. We enter the cafe just after a person opening the door and slipping out. There is an old wooden counter with a display of muffins, brownies, scones, an old cash register and a big bouqet of flowers. It is spring!


The camera pans around and stops on the silhouette of a man sitting in a corner. He is facing the whole cafe but does not seem to notice anything. He is absentmindedly staring at the coffee on his table. We see his profile. Slowly the camera comes closer and takes in the whole person (James Dean style, with half curly dark hair, dark blue jeans that are rolled up over his ankles, torn espadrillas that he is not wearing correctly, marine shirt, collar bones visible, 3 days beard…). He has his legs crossed under the table and his right foot on top of the other is beating a rhythm. The rhythm matches the rhythm we hear. He is staring just in front of his eyes, we haven’t see his face from the front yet but he seems to be displaying few emotions. In front of him on the small table there are an open moleskin pad with a dark pencil lying across it, old ray ban sunglasses, and a cup of cappuccino (Starbucks style, very calm, kind of bourgeoisie boredom). Slowly he picks up his pencil (or cole pencil) and starts to sketch. His fingers are long, the tips of the thumb and the inside of his right palm covered in black paint and he makes long swift movements on the paper. After three or four random strokes he stops, keeps the pencil midway in the air  and breathes in air deeply. He puts the pencil back down, sits back in his chair and stares into nowhere. He blinks with the eye, licks his tongue, scratches his eyebrow, musters a half smile (or any other movement that changes the atmosphere) and takes the pencil up again. He is sketching faster, faster, faster and getting excited. His movements are quick, frentic and the strokes have gotten smaller. It looks like he is loosing control but the lines he draws are accurate, linear. A picture comes together. The music picks up in speed and finishes on a high note. He drops the pencil.

The tension is resolved but the guy is still sitting in the cafe. He has the drawing in front of him on the table and this time he is staring at it instead of the air before him. People come in the cafe and go out, a waitress comes pick up his already cold coffee and the time passes by.

The music is relaxed. Absentmindedly he reaches for his cup of coffee but it is gone, he shrugs with his shoulders, lays back once more against the backrest of his chair but then resolves to get up. He straightens up, tossles his hair and rolls his shoulders back. He closes the drawpad, grabs the remaining stuff from the table, stuffs it inside his worn leather bag and stands up. We follow him outside where he proceeds to walk through the street up until crossing Plaça Virreina.

We see his back walking through a tiny street, it looks similar to the first street we had seen in front of the cafe. He was not far away from home but nevetheless chose to sit around in a cafe all afternoon long.

Eventually he enters a house and we see him a second later opening the door to an apartment. The camera is in the apartment and we see the door opening and him coming in. As soon as he closes the old door with the peep-through hole, he kicks off his shoes. They are just thrown against a wall.

Without stopping he continues in the apartment and directs himself directly to a computer that is lying on the table. He is still wearing his bag around the shoulder. The computer opens on photoshop, he is now sitting at the table and drawing the same design he had thought off in the cafe earlier. He is acting carefully.

As he is working on his computer in this very same position, it gets darker.

We’re back in the house of the guy. He is in the same position still absorbed in his photoshop work when it gets lighter and lighter. The sun comes up. Nothing has changed. The shoulder bag is now hanging from his chair but he is still wearing the same clothes and hunched up over the computer screen. The music picks up just as it did in the cafe on the previous day. It becomes more tense, we see him exhausted, in his final finish of the product. The music reaches a high and he slumbs pack in his chair,  raising both his arms like in defeat. He lets the arms fall back casually near his body. He leans forward and takes another glance at the screen. A happy smirk appears on his face. He raises his right arm again and goes with his hand through his messsed up hair. He groans. A gutteral groan of exhaustion. And slumps into his body on the chair (zusammensinken).

A moment later, he gets up from his chair and takes off his pants. He leaves the room and comes back with wet hair, new clothes and a towel around his shoulders. He makes coffee in the ktichen, taking his time grinding the beans in an old wooden grinder. This time he drinks the coffee black and takes the cup to his desk. He takes the shoulder bag off of the chair and puts it neatly in the corner, he opens the window and sits down.

After another sip of coffee and shaking his head to dry the hair he goes to Camaloon website, uploads his file, takes a call on his phone that is buzzing on the table and then after a couple of more clicks on the computer on the right hand corner of his screen the inbox pops up saying ‘thanks for your order’.

He reclines in his chair and crosses his arms behind his head.

We hear the doorbell ringing and see a door from inside the apartment. The guy – now dressed differently and shaven so we understand it is a new day – approaches the door hastily and greets a mailman with a package (toblerone packaging). Awkwardly he receives the package, he is very nervous and excited. Just like a kid on Christmas he takes it like a ritual instead of ripping the paper open. He does it with care. Places the parcel on the wooden table in his living room / kitchen (Berlin style), sits down on the chair, pulls up his sleeves so as to be more free with his hands and starts to open it carefully. Takes out a card and we see the logo Camaloon again and unrolls the wallsticker with his design. He wants to spread it out on the table, but before hand he places two glasses which were on the table on the floor so as to have more space, wipes the table clean with his arm and once carefully laid out caresses / touches the material. It’s satinated.

He looks at his walls, makes the framing movement with his hands, steps back as far as he can, takes a pencil from his jeans pocket and marks a line on the naked white wall and unfolds the sticker. There you finally understand it’s a wall decal. We don’t see the process of applying. Instead we see the guy taking a step back, moving the table to the side and going all the way to the other side of the room to admire the work on the wall. He stems his hands in his waist and has an approving look on his face. He smirks. Clearly satisfied with himself.

His phone rings. He grabs it out of his jeans pockets and while talking moves around the room. When he’s done talking, he puts the phone down on the table quickly and rolls up the sleeves of his sweater.

He is cleaning up the house, washing the dishes and moving away all his stuff on the table stuffing it in drawers. All goes quickly, he moves in and out of the screen. The music slows down and we see him in the bathroom taking a look in the mirror and trying to straighten his hair with some water from the running faucet. It’s not possible, his hair falls back into curls. He dismisses this task, wipes his hands dry on his jeans and gives himself a blink of the left eye through the mirror. We understand he is preparing himself for something.

Guy is coming back in the room followed by another man. The other man is taller than him, has a firm look on his face and is dressed in a suit or at least a dark jeans and buttoned up shirt. It is dark outside, the room is lit with a soft light. He motions the other to sit down. The guest is facing the sticker on the otherwise white wall. He gets out a bottle of liquor and two small glasses and places everything on the table. Meanwhile the guest stares at the sticker, reclines in his chair. crosses his legs, uncrosses them. moves his head forward and tilts it to the right, puts both his hands on the table and starts to chuckle. He then stands up and goes closer to the sticker and then walks back away keeping the eyes fixed on the decal. He turns around and faces the guy. He pats him on the back and smacks his lips. The artist seems relieves, sights, smiles, shakes his head slightly in affirmation and both shake hands. He pours the liquor, they take the glasses and both looking at the art they take a sip.