Raimundo Camilo

*1939 (or 1943), Brazil

Raimundo Camilo was born in north-eastern Brazil and moved to Rio at a young age to work in construction or restaurant kitchens. After his employer had not paid him, he wandered through the streets, penniless.

In 1964 he ultimately ended up in the Colonia Juliano Moreira psychiatric hospital, where he was hospitalized for almost 50 years. He now lives in Ceará with his family. For the most part he draws double-sided banknotes as a reminder of his experiences. He does not however see this as art but rather as his job. From time to time he distributes his money among the poor and can prove to be a generous person living in poverty. He frequently works kneeling in front of his bed and uses recycling materials, forms and packing paper. He produces his colours himself using coffee, for example, and also works with ink and ballpoint pens. His works of art often have a red-violet colour reminiscent of red wine sediment. The front of his banknotes also depicts kings or bandits in line with his own interpretation. A bird usually symbolises the number ‘1’, which is followed by a long row of zeros to demonstrate the banknotes’ value. His unique system with money has made him an important Art Brut artist in Brazil.

Raimundo Camilo is represented by the christian berst art brut gallery in Paris. His work can be seen, for example, in LaM, Villeneuve d’Ascq, France, in The Museum of Everything and in the collection of Gerhard and Karin Dammann, Switzerland.

 

Selected works