One of the lucky or unlucky imperfections of this archive, which is also “Camp de la Bota”, is its state of being both an unfinished archive and an archive that can’t be finished. The work started in 2004, is now more than ever an inventory that is impossible to finish. The more work that has been done the more work there has been to do. Despite all that has been invested (especially the euros that allowed us to give more time to more members of the team) we now know that nobody can put an end to the work. It is impossible to ascertain if 1,704 people (or 1,730 or 1,750 or…) were executed by firing squad, despite the work done by so many people over the last three years.
From the very beginning, one could intuit that every one of the names in this list would give rise to the memory of even more places and people. It is only now, after the first stages of the work that we know that the names have multiplied by many more names and many more places than had been imagined, and that at the same time it has become evident just how much more is left to know. Thus, to get to know each of the names a little has led us to discover much more about the places where they lived and the people with who they lived. It has allowed the network of places and names to grow, while at the same time it has led to the expansion of this place that is “Camp de la Bota”. Each of these execution sites, which over these three years have come to number just over 250, have expanded their own histories and have shown that they are all interconnected and related with one other, and have continued giving numerous variations of the same hard-hitting history.
Thus, this is how more than 11 exhibitions in 11 towns have produced new photographs, new testimonies with more enthusiasm to talk, new documents that have added information…. Altogether it shows that it is difficult to stop the work that gives life to this archive already constructed by so many people; so many people who, as is already known, have led to the authorship of those who started investigating to remain hidden and shared with everyone and between the numerous stories of those who have investigated it (historians, relatives, visitors…).
Only the urgent desire to continue unmasking what is hidden (show all the “Camps de la Bota”, here and everywhere) pushes to look for new ways of prolonging the project to something beyond the walls that have accommodated the archive in its exhibition form. Perhaps it’s the virtual nature of this other network called the internet, fed by electricity, that may let it continue growing and demonstrate that luckily, or unluckily, this work will never finish.
That is why this little exhibition of documents that have appeared as the work went on, also reminds us of all that won’t be done, all that has been lost, and all that remains to be done. All the pledges of an insignificant part of the numerous others that were executed by firing squad who still wait to also be named.
It is very clear that nothing will be finalised, except maybe the discovery that this should never have happened and that all this collected material is much more ours than we imagine, and even much more ours than we would like it to be.