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Cervantes Institute

Tuesday, June 27, Cervantes Institute at 7 PM
Romani Lives
Exhibition, in collaboration with the Cervantes Institute

Lungo Drom means long way in Romany language. This is the story that unfolds in the Vidas Gitanas (Romani Lives) exhibition. The exhibition shows the path taken by the Spanish Gypsies during six centuries since their arrival to the Peninsula in 1425.

Gypsies (or Roma, as they call themselves in their language, the Romani Calo) are the most important minority in Europe but also one of the least well-known by the majority of society. Their old nomadic way of life, which they have retained over the centuries, has forced them to focus on their own community, sometimes in a rather hermetic manner; an attitude that has contributed to the rejection they have habitually suffered in the different societies where they have lived. These factors have resulted in a great lack of knowledge of their reality, which has led to a profound cultural rift with people that has been present on our continent for more than five hundred years. Mutual knowledge will lead to a better coexistence in the future with the only existing pan-European minority.

Lungo drom was selected for the European Union’s Culture Programme 2007-2013 and, after its presentation in Granada, it visited Hungary, Portugal and Austria. The result is a retrospective on the co-existence and integration of different cultures. Designed chronologically, the exhibition allows visitors to follow the red thread of persecutions throughout the story of the Gypsy people in the territory.

On the one hand, there is a long list that reaches up to the 19th century, that consists of disposals, decrees, expulsions, regulations on the work and private organization applied to Roma people. At the same time, there is the power of the culture that has survived despite all the challenges in the course of the story. And a Gypsy Spain flourishes with its artists inspired by the Roma world. It is not possible to understand the history of Spanish music without Camarón de la Isla, Diego el Cigala or Ketama; Spanish literature without the work of Lorca and painting without Julio Romero de Torres. Influences of Roma culture in some cases have taken over an entire art form, as is the case of flamenco with the unreachable movements of Carmen Amaya.

CEBEF prepares and organizes film, music and multimedia ambient festivals with a tradition spanning over decades.


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Program - pdf

.program 2019