Wastelands exist in order to allow us to interrogate the dead without going the full Dante, something which was still feasible when I first visited Barcelona around 9 years ago. Unfortunately instead of simply embezzling the entire revenues of the property boom–preferible artistically and probably feasible abacistically–Barcelona Council bought into the great legacy of fascistic mega-planning, from the mega-pigsty Eixample of Osona farmer’s son Cerdà (i home de bé, no pot ser), ironised in Eduardo Mendoza La ciudad de los prodigios, via Gaudí et al’s physical invention of the Barri Gótic and the post-war improvements of Construcciones Ventura S.A. (José María Gironella’s Condenados a vivir is on the bathroom shelf) and Mayor Porcioles to the communist restorationist Historical Memory project, which in Barcelona in broad terms has consisted in the invention of a nationalist-socialist millenium along lines parallel to those taken a few years earlier by Ricardo de la Cierva.
The result is an architectural modeller’s dream of clean lines and shoddy building practice which makes it increasingly difficult to delve in ground that has not been prepared for that purpose–history as a Truman Show treasure hunt. And the PSC oligarchy–in charge ever since most people can remember and until the elections on May 22–has not been content to inflict this lobotomised Disneyvision on areas frequented by itself and by the English-speaking projectile vomiters of the world, but has generously sought to improve the lives of the common people by killing off their chickens and putting their owners in concrete chicken-hutches, and the kickback’s in the envelope.
And so here is mayoral hopeful Montserrat Tura having herself vanity-snapped and bullshitting about neighbourhood policy in a part of Horta called La Clota, which her party has spent the last 20 years trying to concrete over (the first major destruction came higher up the riera for the Olympics) in the face of resistance from most of the locals, and which the current modified plan will still turn into 50% high-rise:
I could go into some detail re the shitty cynicism of Montse Tura and the Barcelona PSC in general, but you’re probably better off reading a local blog, La Clota Informa.
A new translation of Joan Maragall’s poem about the anarchist bombing of the Barcelona Opera in 1893, and a limerick by
- The coming and going of the gypsies
Yo, el vaquilla, quinqui cinema, and the usual political whining.
- Cataloonia, Sweden on the Med
Jordi Pujol’s venerable dream appears finally to have been realised, although perhaps not quite as he anticipated.
- Squats demolished c/ Amor, Horta
One of Barcelona’s last patches of pre-war farms, small factories and cottages is under assault from planners.
- Eye and Hand of Fatima on gypsy door in Perpignan
Efforts have been made to erase a sticker of a member of the Incredible Hulk clan. Superimposed on the wooden cross