Los jóvenes de barrio (Young People from the 'Hood)

Video-Nou/Servei de Vídeo Comunitari

Barcelona, Spain, 1977 -1983
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    39 min. 40 sec.
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  • Donation of Xefo Guasch, 2011

Video-Nou was a collective formed in 1977, two years later becoming the management team of the Servei de Video Comunitari, which was conceived as a public service collective. Its members came from all areas of journalism, sociology, anti-psychiatry, education, the visual and performing arts and architecture. The group pioneered the use of portable Video equipment in Spain, with the idea of starting up some kind of counter-informative, activist TV station, rooted in specific conceptual art practices and institutional criticism.
The Museum collection has thirteen recordings of the group’s activities, alongside a quantity of documentary material consisting of photographs, articles, press cuttings and publications. Some of the works show the historic moment when the libertarian trade union movement of the CNT/FAI reached its peak, such as Huelga de gasolineras (Petrol Stations on Strike), 1977, and Jornades Llibertàries Internacionals 1977 Barcelona (International Libertarian Conference 1977 Barcelona), 1977. The collective was also witness to the counterculture atmosphere of 1970s Barcelona; when it comes to political movements and gay activism, the outstanding work has to be Actuació d’Ocaña i Camilo (Performance by Ocaña and Camilo), 1977, recorded on the day of the gay and lesbian demonstration against the Ley de Peligrosidad Social (Law of Social Danger). From 1978 the Video-Nou collective concerns itself more with documenting the social changes produced by the gentrification of many neighbourhoods in cities across Catalonia, as can be seen in pieces like Canyelles (projecte Ateneus) (Canyelles [Atheneus Project]) from 1978. This group of works is a cornerstone in the understanding of the historical events and social procedures so rife during the transition to democracy in Catalonia and the rest of Spain.

Lola Hinojosa