Programación orientada a objetos

Xavi Hurtado

The title of this piece is itself a suggestive word game between a specific type of computer programming language and its corresponding literal interpretation, having in mind that we - as can be perfectly appreciated in Hurtado’s video - are these “objects”, users of technology, clients, living annexes. This piece is a kind of user manual divided into four sections that shows us some of the strange relations between technology, identity and corporate entities.

Getting started:
The video begins in this first part with a voice over conjugating the verb “amar” (to love). Both the images illustrating this part and the voice over have been taken from old archive educational footage, material that we could go so far as calling archeological. The screen fades to black, and without further ado, the title of the second section appears:

Basic components, features and configurations

A concatenation of commercial ads of the year of the production of the piece (1999), one after the other, is presented. These are ads, all of them representative of computer products of the time, presented by faces associated with each of the brands shown. We watch, for example, Bill Gates telling us that today, thanks to technological advances, there are never before known opportunities available to us. The coldness of these corporate images stand in stark contrast to the sound track, a latin tune, selected by Hurtado to mix both aesthetics and so emphasise, even more so, the disturbing effect of the ads and of the comments in them contained.

A printer spewing a sheet of paper with the utmost care, or a chip being inserted into a computer as if we were witnessing open heart surgery, place us in this biotechnological terrain that later, in the video’s third section, is emphasised even more, when Alison shows up to tell us, in an obsessive manner, about her paranoid-technological experience.
Alison, which is the title of the third section, talks about a chip that can scan the soul of whoever has had it installed by the CIA. “It travels in your blood to your head and once there, it can register all the impulses that your brain produces when you think or imagine something”. Alison lives in the streets of New York. She is another one of those marginalised by the techno-political system in which our lives take place.

The last section of this short 7 min. film is intriguingly titled “another part and notes”. In it we watch a fragment of the Prayer channel. A priest asks: “Where am I going? I know I am going somewhere, I only need to know where.” The image closing the piece seems to provide the answer: a Gold Master Card, lit up, appears before us whilst everything around it (us?) dissolves.

Technical datasheet

  • Title: Programación orientada a objetos
  • Direction: Xavi Hurtado
  • Production: 1999.
  • Duration: 00:07:07
  • Languages: English - Spanish
  • Original format: Mini DV
  • Formats: Betacam Digital - DVD
  • TV systems: PAL
  • License: Copyright