‘What has interested me, and what I have tried to talk about is what I call the small memory. This is what differentiates us one from another. The great memory can be found in history books, but the hoard of small bits of knowledge that each one of us has accumulated makes up what we are. I know that I am engaged in a struggle. Someone has said: "Nowadays we die twice: first at the time of our death, and again when nobody recognizes us in a photograph any more". I often compile lists of names (dead swiss, workers in a factory in northern England in the XIX century, artists who participated in the Venice Biennale…) because I have the impression that saying or writing a person's names gives them life for a few moments; if one names them, one recognizes their individual existence.’

Christian Boltanski, 1996