Walter Benjamin Memorial, Portbou

Almost half century after Walter Benjamin death, the German government charges the prestigious artist Karavan a memorial monument dedicated to the philosopher, to be settled on the Costa Brava village where died: Portbou.

Monumento a Walter Benjamin, en Portbou, Girona, Costa Brava

Walter Benjamin Memorial, in Portbou, Girona, Costa Brava

The monument is called ‘Passages’, referring to unfinished Benjamin’s last work: Passagen Werk, begun in 1927, a collection of citations and fragments that showed the different types of human transient to awake them from their own conscious absorption.

El pueblo de Portbou recuerda mediante una placa el lugar donde falleció Benjamin, el antiguo Hostal Francia

Portbou village remembers through this plaque the place where Walter Benjamin died, in the ancient Hostal Francia

The monument consists of a tunnel formed by steel plates with an oxidized red color, which adapts to the rocky environment that surrounds Portbou landscape, shaped by the north wind, the Tramuntana, which blows sometimes furiously.

El monumento a Walter Benjamin se encuentra junto al cementerio de PortbouWalter Benjamin Memorial is located next to Portbou cemetery

As long as the visitor goes down through the tunnel he feels the effect of the solitude of their steps until the moment when he arrives to the end light, striking a lookout towards the Bay of Portbou.

In the interior of the cemetery, a few meters away of the tunnel, it is possible to visit the ancient Walter Benjamin tomb, from the time he died until 1945, when the body was buried in a common grave.

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This post was written by Blanca Pons who has written 13 posts on Costa Brava Blog.

Blanca Pons is Costa Brava's editor and a passionated Ampurdan landscapes photographer. Born in Roses, Blanca never loses the chance to take the best shot. Her best loved place is the Empordà Marshes

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