Field of the Struggle, Formerly Plaza de Cataluña.
     WE ASSUME the independence of Catalonia as the starting point of our proposal. The celebration of the Tercentenary reflects the declared will of a large part of the electorate to set forth towards the country's independence. For us it is not a question of being for or against independence, but rather one of ensuring that the new country that rises as a consequence will not be run by the same bunch of cronies and their kith and kin who today control the politics, the economy and the culture of this country. Always guided by their tribal interests they tell us, and tell themselves, that their sole interest lies with Catalonia's good. An independent country where it will no longer be necessary to "defend" Catalonia from Spain will be able to defend the Catalans from the Catalans and recover part of what has been lost, seemingly irretrievably, as this country has sold itself off. Catalonia once meant creation, speech, enterprise, and a deep sense of ethics. It had its own sense of existence, yet all it offers now is the deconstructed omelette and one of the richest and most varied prostitution offerings in Europe (from low cost quickies on foot in monumental downtown, to designed luxury dungeons on the Bonanova) to all visitors to which it hires itself out. Therefore we demand that our new country guarantees our citizens' rights and provides us with a fitting place in which to exercise them.


The current Palau de la Generalitat and Parliament are obsolete for the exercise of a modern representative democracy. Therefore, for the new country to be truly democratic, it is imperative that the people be given a space where they can relate directly to power. We will force our rulers out of their hiding places, those medieval and "Victorian" palaces where they become entrenched as if afraid of their own electorate. A new country requires a new system that can represent and narrate its own myths and fantasies. Therefore, our proposal for a monument consists in rearticulating the centre of Barcelona through an urban, architectural and artistic intervention. I. A square. II. A new Parliament. III. A new Palau de la Generalitat. IV. A Ministry of Defence, the Army and the Navy. V. A Ministry of Finance and Central Bank. VI. A Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VII. An Internal Revenue Agency. VIII. A national pantheon. IX. A monument dedicated "to the struggle of the Catalan people for self-determination". X. The moon and the sun. XI. A rose garden. XII. A piece of sea. XIII. A Catalan flag


Writing history entails naming; rewriting it means renaming. What should a new country do with its history and heritage? How will our Spanish past fit into our new country? Will we suppress this part of our history? How will we come to terms, for instance, with the beauty of that Plan for the Eixample, which, having been imposed from Madrid, is today half of our beauty? What will we do with the Plaza de Espa�a? And, above all, what will we do with that square we were allowed to name as a palliative, when we demanded a country? 'Plaza de Catalu�a� is a colonial denomination and thus should be the first name to disappear from our streets. We propose renaming it �Pla de la lluita�-"Field for the Struggle". Or does anyone think that a new country can be obtained as a reward, or as a favour, just like that? Catalonia struggles amidst its glorious medieval and Spanish pasts. The meeting point between these two notions and their times is a real, physical place: the ignored, desolate, devastated 'Plaza de Catalu�a�. Today it is the centre of Spanish power and its banks, fast food, franchises, con men, top mantas, tourist buses, ice-skaters in tongs and tight leotards, toy bulls and Toledo swords sold by Spaniards from Rajasthan, as well as Flamenco dresses, Mexican sombreros and the most banal national architecture (from Puig i Cadafalch to Oriol Bohigas). We propose demolition of all those buildings to make room for a new site. The triangle that lies between Plaça d'Urquinaona, Plaça de la Universitat and Rambla de Canaletes will then be assumed as the true centre of the city, one that in our architecture and town planning has never been recognised as such.


A closed circle in which the components look in at each other is the geometrical figure that defines the logic of our country: the Parliament, the castellers, the sardana, the "more than a club", the Orfe�, the Circle of the Liceu, of the Economy, of Culture, the Royal Artistic Circle, the Business Circle, the Circle of Independentist Studies, the Equestrian Circle, of Witches, of the three-hundred families, etc., etc., etc. But we are a circle without a centre, like a baby without a belly button. The birth of a new nation implies cutting the umbilical cord, and living with that scar. As Barcelona is born to its new capital status it deserves this mark. THE PROGRAMME Where will we be able to vent our grievances when we see that our new country is the same as ever? Are we certain that the individuals and groups conducting the current process are not throwing us into it headfirst in order to hide their own inefficiencies and corruption and remain in power? (Que veinte años no es nada...) Why is nothing being said about the future plans for our country, its raison d��tre, beyond the sad mantra of the fifteen, the 15, the 15%? Where will we be able to demonstrate when in this old country, finally, everything that happens is our own fault? Tiananmen, Tahrir, Maidan, are proof that the physical presence of the people is essential. Just as it seemed that reality was becoming simply a virtual representation, it turn out that, at the end of the day, the fundamental questions are settled by sheer force in the dead center of the public square. Thus we shall provide an enormous civic space closed to vehicles and franchises and to the increasingly frequent violence of our national police. A truly monumental plinth dedicated to the Catalan people, a surface as bright and golden as our self-image and as moonlike as our dreams. The new Parliament will be there for everyone to see. The new Members of Parliament will have to get used to their exposure and rubbing shoulders with the people. The new Parliament will be a place where those who have been given powers to represent us will not be able to arrive incognito or by helicopter for fear of the electorate. At the other end of the square will be the new Palau de la Generalitat, a witness to national rejoicings and enraged arsonists, and from whose balcony the president of the day will be able to bask in the adoration of the masses, or hide behind curtains from the people�s reprobation. The new ministries will be housed in four tower blocks inspired by the castellers. The first and highest tower will house the Internal Revenue Service, since the declarations of the participants in the independentist process point to the revenues of taxation as the true cause of their struggle, the seat of true power, money, the collective dream of our people. The second tower will be the Ministry of Defence. Although the pragmatic, and often cowardly nature of our country prefers anonymous denunciations as a form of self-defence, we should ask ourselves how we will protect our children when the Spanish �Putin� of the day decides to defend the Spanish-speaking majority against the minority in power. Leaders drawn by Pan-Catalanist fantasies will need an army. Oriol Junqueras has expressed with messianic vision how the �Catalan countries� will join the ongoing process, suggesting a kind of peasant (and slightly seafaring) Anschluss. The third tower will be the headquarters of the Central Bank and the Mint, whose piano nobile will house the design department, busy creating the national currency: a new look for the centenary�pela�. The fourth tower will house the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and will be unfinished and under-staffed by unpaid diplomats, since the independence budget does not account for the cost of being a new country and actually looking like one. In the square there will be a national pantheon dedicated to all the great dead Catalan men and women. The building like the original Pantheon will be open to the sky. The remembrance graves will be arranged along a downward spiral ramp, three-hundred steps descending from grade, at the bottom of which will burn, of course, the eternal flame. The building will grow or not in time depending on how great or petty the new country turns out to be. The great figurative monument dedicated to the struggle of the Catalan people for self-determination will be a sculptural plaza filled with replicas of the civil statues generated by Catalonia throughout its history. These will speak for themselves, and perhaps help explain the aspirations of the new country, images of our past unfulfilled dreams, given that, no matter how hard we tried, we were never able to decipher any new ones. The "green" in the new square will consist of a vast rose garden, volcanoes erupting wild roses, our national flower. Our first act of independence and proof of our coherent maturity will be to ban imports of this flower. We will now grow them at the very heart of the nation. Finally we will install a fountain fed by pure Mediterranean water, with real waves instead of a jet, a permanent storm in a teacup. At its shore, a Catalan flag as large as our aspirations, woven in gold thread, and dyed in lambs blood will stand in the centre of the centre of the centre.


The starting point of these ideas is the current outcry for Catalonia's "right to decide". But we believe that any right to decide should be preceded by an obligation to discuss, argue and confront conflicting proposals. So here is ours: Let the new country finally fulfill the dreams that almost drove it to destruction in 1714 and reinstate Karl Thomas Robert Maria Franziskus Bahnam Georg von Habsburg-Lothringen, heir to the Habsburg dynasty, as king of the new country, as desired by each and every one of the heroes whose memory we honour this year and to whom we pay homage with this proposal.