“La Divanee is based on the real story of the Catalan Countess of Guell, Palomba Matas Mujika de Pumeral y Santiago. She reclined herself on a chaise lounge at the age of eighteen with the intention to never stand up again.”
So begins the synopsis for La Divanee, a short film (not actually based on a true story) by Jessica Mitrani that’s making its New York debut at Neuehouse on May 4. The film stars Fatimah Azzahra as the Countess, who doesn’t just lie there as she reclines nude (save for animal skins), but writes seven novels and even gives birth. And guess who does the voiceover? None other than Spanish actress Rosy de Palma, she with the ultimate accent befitting a Catalan lady of leisure.
The same night Matrani is also screening her first film, Rita Goes to the Supermarket (2010), a satirical musical short shot in candy-colored 35 millimeter film. Sounds like a Chanel show waiting to happen.
La Divanee & Rita Goes to the Supermarket, 30 minute reel of both films will run from 4-5:30 pm, May 4, followed by a conversation between Jessica Mitrani and Adrienne Edwards (associate curator, Performa Institute), Neuehouse, 110 E 25th St, NYC