5 Factories – Worker Control in Venezuela

DVD: 5 Factories

The protagonists portrayed at the five production locations present insights into ways of alternative organizing and models of workers' control. Mechanisms and difficulties of self-organization are explained as well as the production processes. The portrayal of machine processes could be seen as a metaphor for the dream machine “Bolivarian process” and the hopes and desires it inspires among the workers.

The situation varies from factory to factory, the five factories share the common search for better models of production and life. This not only means concrete improvements for the workers. Aury Arocha, laboratory analyst at the ketchup factory “Tomates Guárico”, emphasizes that the difference between “social production companies” (EPS) and capitalist corporations is that the EPS “work for the community and society”. Carlos Lanz, president of the second largest aluminum factory in Venezuela, Alcasa, coins the key question: “How does a company push toward socialism within a capitalist framework?”

The film ends with an extended sequence from a management meeting at Alcasa, a company with 2.700 workers, with discussions about their co-management and the changes of production relations they aspire towards.

The film is originally in Spanish and available with German or English subtitles (from May 2006 onwards).

The English version “5 Factories–Workers’ Control in Venezuela” as an installation version with six video projections from March 26 to May 28, 2006 will open the Matrix series “Now-Time Venezuela: Media Along the Path of the Bolivarian Process” at the Berkeley Art Museum (U.S.A.). The program curated by Chris Gilbert consists of six solo exhibitions.

  • Concept, interviews, film editing, and production: Dario Azzellini & Oliver Ressler
  • Camera: Volkmar Geiblinger
  • Production Assistant in Venezuela: Eduardo Daza
  • Image editing and titles: Markus Koessl
  • Sound Editor: Rudi Gottsberger
  • Interviewees: José Luis Acosta, Luis Alfonso, Luis Alvarez, Aury Arocha, Zulay Boyer, Carolina Chacón, Eleuterio Córdova, Hugo Favero, Manrique Gonzales, Dulfo Guerrero, Rowan Jiménez, Carlos Lanz, Marivit Lopez, Rigoberto López, Willys Lugo, Gonzalo Maestre, Luis Mata Castillo, Domingo Meléndez, Edith Mendoza, José Gregorio Moy, Carmen Ortíz, Alexander Patiño, Santos Pérez, Juana Ruíz, Elio Sayago, José del Carmen Tapias, Leslie E. Turmero
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