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Owner’s Portrait

Joaquín Maito
Retrato de propietarios
Argentina 2018 / 80’
Olanda Property

Somewhere beyond the borders of the map, there is an island without people, money or work. It is inhabited by a population of cats that issue anarchist proclamations that spread throughout the world by means of antennas left there. The first urban-dwelling creatures to hear them are dogs—a rebellion ensues among domestic animals. Pets flee from their homes (prisons?) in search of freedom in the ruins of the old order. Posters about lost cats and dogs start appearing all over the city walls. This film essay by Joaquin Maito, an Argentinean director and visual artist, portrays modern civilization through the perspective of domestic animals and their owners. The world he presents looks familiar, but otherworldly where nothing is self-evident or immutable. Everyday objects look disturbing, sounds reverberate in a different way, and public space is organized according to incomprehensible rules. In contrast to classic films about the world as seen through the eyes of animals, Maito’s work is not a quirky outlier, but rather a political manifesto with revolutionary power. It's the animals versus late capitalism.

Ewa Szabłowska


Ji.hlava International Documentary FF 2018 – Best Feature-Length Documentary Debut Film

Joaquín Maito

Joaquin Maito is an Argentinian director and artist. He and Tatiana Mazu collaborated on the award-winning 2012 film The State of Things, which shows items auctioned by the heirs who inherited them. Maito is interested in the anthropology of everyday life and his films discuss the present by taking inventory of our state of ownership: real estate, objects, animals.


2012 The State of Things

2018 Portret właścicieli / Retrato de propietarios / Owner's Portrait

Cast & Crew

director Joaquín Maito
screenplay Joaquín Maito
cinematography Joaquín Maito
editing Manuel Embalse, Tatiana Mazú
music Catriel Vildosola, Nahuel Palacios
producer Romina Beraldi, Joaquín Maito
production Antes Muerto Cine
sales Joaquín Maito
language Spanish
colouration colour