Newsletter November 2018

With the words Die heiße Asche des Diktators”, the Hot Ashes of the Dictator, in Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ) of November 1st 2018, journalist Paul Ingendaay captures the toxicity of the highly divisive Francoist Memorial at Valle de los Caídos, as well as the urgency of Hybrid Space Lab’s workshop “Deep Space: Re-signifying Valle de los Caídos”.

The
Gaze

Catalan journalist Sílvia Marimon describes in the article “The Gaze of Experts” on ARA, the main Catalonian newspaper on 31st October 2018 the workshop participants’ visit to the site and the necessity of a change of the monument’s narrative.

The workshop started to crack open future visions for the monument, drawing on the co-creation of digital and analog memory-making practices. To re-signify controversial memory landscapes, three working groups have proposed new meanings and envisioned creative processes which have the potential to crossfade the controversy.

Deep Space is a long-term investigative program initiated to deal with politics of memory, controversial monuments and heritage.

Contaminated Landscapes
One group focused on the mapping of the monument in its surrounding landscape, developing proposals for paths and viewpoints, creating new perspectives, aiming at making people aware, as they move through the Valley of the Fallen, of its painful history.

Valle 2068
The second group stretched their design thinking into 50 years from now, in 2068, and envisioned a future for the monument including the possibility of it becoming a Research Center, a venue hosting an Art and Engagement Program, and a Global Centre for Peace and Interpretation.

Digital Archive
A third group dealt with the idea of creating a ‘Digital Archive’ which would allow to gather, access and store bottom-up collaborative and interdisciplinary contributions on the monument’s morbid history. This would foster dialogue, counterbalancing the site’s totalitarian narrative with the networked polyphony of democratic voices, accompanying the decline of the monument – the pixels deconstructing and corroding the stone.