José Luis Guerín, Spain's wayward master, and his students at Pompeu Fabra pointed the camera at demolition and building activities in El Xino, a working class area of Barcelona, and shot 110 hours of material in two years. Through the construction of this new building we follow several characters, from the drug addicted lovers who squat a space as long as they can, to the new yuppies who are shown round by estate agents. A parallel emerges between the changes in an urban landscape and the human landscape.
Guerin: 'With Work in Progress, I asked myself: "What can a group of students give me that a group of professional technicians can't?" On one hand, they gave me their enthusiasm. With technicians, it's like they're going from movie to movie so it becomes more of a routine, like actual work. On the other hand - and above all - the most unique singularity about this film is that they were able to give me time. It would be impossible to have pro technicians for two years and a little bit. It costs a lot of money. So it was a film that was only possible to make because of the time they gave me.'