Mural Neus Català by Miquel Wert
Malgrat de Mar
“Two sides of the same coin” is the new large format mural of the artist Miquel Wert made during the month of July in Malgrat de Mar. This has been a production of Rebobinart in collaboration with the City Council of Malgrat de Mar and wants to be a tribute to Neus Català and a recognition of the task and fight against fascism that she did throughout her life.
Miquel Wert is a painter, muralist and professor of Fine Arts at the University of Barcelona. His works and murals are exhibited internationally in numerous solo and group exhibitions. His murals can be seen in cities such as Madrid, Barcelona, Paris, Navarra, Mallorca or Lussan, among others.
Neus Català, republican and feminist, dedicated her whole life to fight against fascism and in favor of a historical memory. She had to go into exile from Franco’s dictatorship and once in France she joined the resistance. She was arrested, sentenced to life imprisonment and deported to the Nazi concentration camp of Ravensbrück. In that camp, initially for women, an estimated 132,000 women and children, 1,000 adolescents and from 1941 onwards 20,000 men were interned. She was later transferred to the Holleischen camp, where she was liberated. She returned to France where she dedicated her days to fight against Franco’s dictatorship and for the recovery of the history of the deported women. She died in 2019.
Miquel Wert’s work wants to be a cry of hope and, through different images, he wanted to create a dialogue between several moments of Neus Català’s life. The image on the top left comes from a snapshot that reflects some women with their backs turned on their way to the entrance of the Ravensbrück camp. “The women’s coats were marked with these crosses that we see to distinguish them from prisoners (…) This image seemed to me a more subtle way to evoke the Nazi horror, without falling into more explicit and recurrent representations of images, “explains the artist. The image on the right is perhaps the best known of Neus Català. It is a portrait with the uniform of a prisoner of the camp made after her liberation: “It was she herself who wanted to immortalize herself in this way. I thought it was essential to preserve her desire to communicate her experience with the image that she herself wanted to send to the world,” says Wert. Finally, the image below comes from a photograph taken in Toulouse in 1947, two years after the liberation of Ravensbrück. “The image portrays part of the strong core of the anti-fascist women’s association of Catalonia called Unió de Dones de Catalunya, where we find Neus, who is on the right,” Miquel explains.
Thanks to this intervention made by Wert and assisted by Deseo, along with the participatory mural made between eleven young people and the artist Núria Toll, the relevant activity developed by Neus Català in the fight against fascism, against oblivion and in favor of feminism and historical memory has been made visible. “For me it has been an honor to pay tribute to the life of this fighter and admirable woman and I hope that this mural reaches many people and keeps her story alive”, concludes the artist Miquel Wert.
From Rebobinart, once again, we are committed to the murals of historical memory, weaving bridges between the past, present and future and opening windows in the public space for reflection and collective dialogue.