There is not much more left of the street than – to use a term by Le Corbusier – a machine of movement, equipped to make traffic run smoothly. The street in its original and spontaneous form, as a breeding ground for new life, is restrained. The efficiency controlling the traffic grid does not merely affect the existing living area, but also the form and pattern of new living. Residential areas have turned into traffic zones, inhabitants are pushed back into their homes. The function of the street, of the home and the working environment is marked off – there are no in-between spaces left, nothing but trajectories. In sound and image, Jef Cornelis evokes, after a scenario by Geert Bekaert, the deterioration of the street, once public, into a fragment of an unnatural, ruthless production system. This film was made on the occasion and as an extension of the exhibition ‘De Straat. Vorm van samenleven’ (‘The street. A way of living together’) at the van Abbemuseum in Eindhoven (1972). As a result the exhibition was not confined to the walls of the museum, it was also extended to the television network. Television, in its turn, was involved in an actual social process.

Original broadcast date: 14/09/1972