Helene Reimann sold shoes. She was married with seven children. In 1938, she was hospitalized for schizophrenia. This happened at a time when the Nazis exterminated mentally ill people. Helene escaped by hiding at one of her daughter’s. In 1949, she was admitted to the mental hospital of Bayreuth. Withdrawn into herself, she spent most of her time drawing. She hid her works under her pillow to prevent the hospital staff from throwing them away. In 1975, Professor Böcker became director of the hospital and showed an appreciation for her art.
Helene Reimann’s drawings are an album of her memories from the days preceding her hospitalization. She takes objects from her everyday life : shoes, dresses, animals, furniture, flowers and fruit. Reimann feels removed and deprived of everything. She has moved far away, like those intergalactic voyagers who take with them only a few traces from the earth.
SEE ALSO :
Lommel, Madeleine. L’Aracine et l’Art Brut. Nice : Z’éditions, 1999.