This year the central theme of the FADfest was a hot topic in the Catalan capital’s public and media agenda: tourism in the city. Although noise and controversy dates from way back, the citizens’ perception of tourism as a source of conflict or concern has unstoppably climbed the list of worries to the point of viewing this issue as the city’s main problem. This is indicated by the latest biannual barometer presented by Barcelona City Hall, which for the first timeputs tourism at the head of the list, surpassing the two great monsters that headed this black list since 2008: unemployment and economic hardship.
These results confirm a controversial and polarized scenario that had to be approached with care and rigour through impartiality and balance, without taking up positions or postures. At the FAD we wanted to reflect on the management of tourism and its debate, asking ourselves about the relations between design and tourism and, through an open and prepositional vision, we have organized a programme of activities curated by Ramon Faura Coll to reclaim the right to visit and Inhabit the spaces we have lost without forgetting that, after all, we can all be tourists. But above all, we have put data to the state of tourism with the clear determination of encouraging a healthy and necessary debate that allows us to start workingon a resolution that will be favourable to all.
To avoid the bias effect and obtain a broad view that includes all the positions, opinions and data available regarding the tourist issue, we recommend viewing “The tourist alphabet”. This title is a selection of the more than 24hoursof interviewsrecorded for the mobile exhibition that during this FADfest has been visited by all those who are curious and interested in the subject and which will help us to put a face to the phenomenon and to understand in all its complexity the debate on a subject that is of such great concern for Barcelona. Arguments for and against; the testimony of neighbours, collectives, politicians, business people, experts, tourists, workers, etc. All voices should be able to give their opinion when it comes to discerning the prejudices from the problems, the advantages from the drawbacks.
The chiaroscuros of tourism here set out will serve, among other material with which we are working, to produce a documentary directed by the curator of the FADfest and that will see the light next autumn. But if you don’t want to wait, you can start to make an in-depth analysis of the 8 thematic areas that we believe articulate the state of tourism today and the debate on tourism in Barcelona.
FADfest 2017 és un projecte del FAD. Foment de les Arts i del Disseny www.fad.cat