|Summer 1970: Franco and Barcelona's Mayor Porcioles after an obligatory visit to the cathedral, the dictator's last visit to the city. Despite the public enthusiasm the city had already begun to no longer be his.|
Although Catalunya has largely recovered its autonomy since the installment of democracy in 1978, the memories of repression and resistance live on throughout the province, particularly concentrated in the streets of Barcelona. Memorial Democràtic, a public institution whose purpose is to recover, commemorate and encourage democratic memory from 1931 to 1980, and the Generalitat's Department of the Interior, Institutional Relations and Participation have teamed up with Arqueologia del Punt de Vista - an organisation that recovers photographs of “unfinished history”, locates the place where they were taken and returns there to take more photos - with a photographic installation across the city raising the memories and reality of Barcelona's intense past into the present. Twelve life-sized photographs of historical acts of repression and/or resistance in various sites across the city – such as at the Portal de l'Àngel, Plaça de Catalunya, Plaça de la Universitat, Passeig de Gracia – have been placed in those spaces, enabling the viewer to engage with these historic displays of power and simultaneously their experience of the place at present.
|Spring 1978: Freedom of expression protest in front of the Universitat de Barcelona.|
The final image below is the photographic itinerary and map of the Repression and Resistance installation, running until 18 September. In case you can make it to the city, guided tours are also available on Saturdays. Check the Generalitat de Cataluyna’s website for more information.
Credits: First three photographs taken by the author. Image of Spring 1978 freedom of expression protest from Arqueologia del punt de vista blog. Map of photographic itinerary from a Memorial Democràtic pamphlet on the installation.