Minesota 1943

Toni Serra / Abu Ali

“Relax, try to be honest”. In 1943 the University of Minnesota was commissioned by the American military to carry out a psychological test in order to select a new group of staff officials. The questions and answers from  this test outline a new space, a new context even, full of mysterious atmospheres charged with violence and tension: a rigid and tense setting.

From this starting point, Toni Serra carries out a collage exercise, a de-montage, by which images coming from television ads, film fragments and well-known soundtracks, converge on one point and produce an effect that can move all the tension mentioned above to a level of interpretation somewhere between the personal and the social. The coercion that this experiment of 1943 produces – and this is an aspect of the video that deserves a special mention – is precisely the way in which it has been slowly extended and incorporated into the personnel hiring policies of the majority of today’s private companies. It is clearly under this pressure that the labour force is shaped nowadays. In this sense, the piece that Serra hereby presents, fits in with a specific idea and practice, which seems to have featured since the beginning of his career, namely, the idea of delving deep into fiction until the real is discovered, even if in doing so, pain is caused.

Technical datasheet

  • Title: Minesota 1943
  • Direction: Toni Serra / Abu Ali
  • Production: Me Pierdo Prod+Psico TV. 1995.
  • Duration: 00:07:12
  • Subtitles: English - Spanish
  • Original format: Mini DV
  • Formats: Betacam Digital - DVD
  • TV systems: PAL
  • License: Copyright