Love Your Neighbour | ARTE

A Portuguese by Jose-Luis the Spaniard

And you, how do you picture a Portuguese?

Hanna the Finn

She is a Portuguese grandmother, a large lady with short grey hair. Her eyebrows are thick and black. She’s wearing a traditional dress that goes down to her knees. There are buttons on it, a collar and flower or coloured patterns. She is in the street, arms crossed, glancing towards her neighbours to check on them. Frowning, with a stern look, unsmiling… It’s a quiet and residential street. There are clouds but it’s not raining. It mustn’t be cold because she is in short sleeves.

Collected in Helskinki

Giannis the Greek

I picture a man not very tall, black-haired, wearing jeans and a sweater. It’s winter, he is home with friends. They eat, drink, and sing before the Benfica-Marseille soccer match. They never stop commenting on the players – those the coach should bring in, those he shouldn’t. I am for the Olympique, whereas he absolutely wants his team to win and make it to the Champions League. The difference with a Greek is that he is nicer. We saw it when Portugal lost the final against Greece in  2004. The Portuguese are calmer.

Collected in Athens

Tomek the Pole

It’s the story of a little Portuguese guy of 25. He’s wearing a casual tee-shirt, shorts and flip-flops. He walks across the rundown town towards the beach. There he meets up with his friends to swim, sunbathe, eat fish, and drink cheap wine. The situation in Portugal is by no means enviable, he can’t afford any quality products, but still he is happy, satisfied with life as a whole. He is attracted by men, as he is gay. It’s late but he doesn’t hasten because he is a happy-go-lucky. It’s typical of their culture to take everything lightly.

Collected in Cracow

Claire the Luxembourger

Spontaneously, I see a black-haired man in his mid-forties, muscled and tanned. He works on a building site as a simple worker. Because of the heat, he’s wearing shorts and a white sleeveless tee-shirt. He’s got a helmet and safety shoes. He is tidying up his equipment. He is anxious to go back home and see his children, and eat the crunchy chicken his wife made for him. It may be a stereotype, but with no malicious intention. It’s just the first picture that comes to my mind when I imagine a Portuguese.

Collected in Luxembourg


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A Pole
A Croat
A Luxembourger
A Latvian
An Italian
A Swede
A Portuguese
A Dane
An Estonian
A Hungarian
A German
An Englishwoman
A Greek
A Slovene
A Maltese
A Belgian
An Austrian
A Bulgarian
A Czech
A Lithuanian
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A Romanian
An Irishwoman
A Frenchman
A Cypriot
A Dutchman
A Finn
A Spaniard
fresco - Love your neighbor

How do you picture your European neighbours?

This is what we asked to nationals from the 28 EU countries. Drag the missing pieces into the fresco to discover the films. Stereotypes? Truths? Fantasies? It's for you to see.

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