Sunday, 9 February 2014

Argentina: More on museum project for ESMA

Pagina/12 provides more information on the memory museum project for the ESMA site in Buenos Aires.

The curators of the place of memory will be Alejandra Naftal - herself a former detained-disappeared person - and Hernán Bisman. Naftal was one of the founders of the Memoria Abierta archive. She explains that the museum project will draw on documentary evidence as well as legal, academic, artistic, journalistic and audiovisual sources, plus testimoney from the victims and relatives. The members of the navy "never talked and never told the truth", she said.

For Naftal, sites of memory are different to articles, books or films, because they are places of "authorised" truth. "You can argue, what is the truth, right? But we are determined enough to back up what we know with documentary sources. We use the testimonies from the courts, the trial of the Juntas in 1985 and the various trials of the ESMA from recent years".

In reply to the question of who the museum is for, Naftal replies "For many people. For millions. For those outside. For young people, old people, children, Argentinians, foreigners."

Daniel Tarnopolsky, of the Instituto Espacio de la Memoria who lost numerous relatives during the dictatorship, explains that the intention is not to "reconstruct" a detention centre in the ESMA. There will be no recreating torture equipment, for example. However it may be that, for example, the photos of Víctor Basterra can be shown in the places where they were taken.
Naftal says:The ESMA is the symbolic centre for Latin America and needs to have international exhibition standards.

Tarnopolsky says:
The ESMA is the Auschwitz of the [Argentine] dictatorship.

More detail in the full article:
“El museo será para millones” (Pagina/12)

No comments: