San Vittore

  • Yuri Ancarani
  • Italy, Switzerland
  • 2018
  • 12 min
  • Dutch Premiere
  • Paradocs
Artboard Copy 2 Created with Sketch. Share

Every time children visit their parents at the San Vittore prison in Milan, Italy, they’re subjected to a thorough security check. They have to turn in their bags, have their shoes and dolls checked, and go through a metal detector. Then a guard leads them by the hand along the long, bare corridors to the visiting room.

The children make drawings at a workshop run by the nonprofit organization Associazione Bambinisenzasbarre Onlus. There are drawings of prison bars and a bloodied doll, with poignant words such as “I have too much responsibility,” and “I feel alone, defenseless.” The youngest children see the the ornately geometric prison as a castle.

The power of this visually striking short film lies in the simplicity of the approach, with many close-ups and distinctive framing and sound design. Words are unnecessary—the sound of a slamming door speaks volumes. This is visual artist Yuri Ancarani’s journey into the minds of children navigating the prison regime and the subtle aggression of security checks.


  • 12 min
  • color
  • DCP
  • Subtitles in: Not applicable
Yuri Ancarani
Yuri Ancarani for Studio Ancarani
Executive producer
Marco Alessi
Kunsthalle Basel, Castello di Rivoli
Yuri Ancarani
Created with Sketch. Show all credits

IDFA history

Dutch Premiere

Share this film

Artboard Copy 2 Created with Sketch. Share

IDFA history