The House of Culture will host from January 24 to February 25 the exhibitionImages and memory of Mauthausen,organized under the initiative of the Austrian Ministry of the Interior, the Amical de Mauthausen of France and the Amical de Mauthausen of Spain, and which has the objective of to publicize the images that document the reality of this concentration camp and of some outside camp, to keep alive the memory of the thousands of deportees to the camps of the Third Reich.
The Councilor for Culture, Pablo Centella, explained that “from the Department of Culture we set ourselves a line of work that allows citizens to contemplate exhibitions of historical relevance and that they do not fall into oblivion. Everything possible must be done so that new generations do not repeat the mistakes made by humanity in the past”.
The photographic exhibition shows images of the Nazi concentration camp of Mauthausen, “a place where the Spanish fled after the uprising and the Civil Waralso arrived and who also fought fascism and Nazism outside our borders”, Centella pointed out.
As this medium has been able to verify, some 10,000 Spanish Republicans were imprisoned in different Nazi camps. Specifically in Mauthausen and annexes there was a total of 7,300, of which 1,500 were Andalusians -220 from Malaga-. Of the latter, 160 died in Mauthausen and adjoining camps.
According to Centella, “these compatriots witnessed the evil and cruelty of Mauthausen. The Franco regime never published their names or informed the families of the whereabouts of their loved ones in order to avoid any type of compensation to them.”
For his part, the curator of the exhibition, the writer José Manuel Portero, stated that “for the Amical de Mauthausen Association it is an honor to be able to be in Benalmádenaand even more so after all the inconveniences caused by the pandemic that have made this exhibition take time to land in the city”.
The Amical Association of Mauthausen is a non-profit association, sponsored by the Austrian Ministry of the Interior and an International Committee of Friends of Mauthausen that is made up of all the countries that, unfortunately, had citizens in the concentration camp.
“The Third Reich cataloged the concentration camp of Mauthausen as ‘penalty’ but with a special category that also corresponded to those of extermination. These camps housed those designated as the main enemies of Nazism, such as Russian, Polish and Slavic soldiers, but also those whose denomination was not clear, and that is where Spaniards who fled Francoism were included”, Portero reported.
To conclude, José Manuel Portero has defined the exhibition as a “synthesis of the hardships suffered by the prisoners and a memory, especially focused so that secondary school students can get closer, see what happened and never repeat atrocities of such a caliber.” ”.
Nazis on the Costa del Sol
A few months ago, Portero published Nazis on the Costa del Sol, a book in which he emphasizes the reasons and causes why the Malaga coast was chosen as the ideal refuge for many of Hitler’s close collaborators.
In this book, published by the Almuzara publishing house, Portero brings to light a long list of Nazi fugitives from justice and, most of them, responsible for horrible crimes who were taken in by a regime that considered them brothers.
The work of the artist from Benalmádena has memory as its guiding thread and hence its author also includes the names and surnames of the people from Malaga who were or died in Mauthausen and in the adjoining concentration camps, camps that are the stars of the images that will be exhibited this month at the House of Culture.
If you want to know more about this historical essay you can access the review published months ago by Ole Benalmádena: Nazis on the Costa del Sol