Farol is a 9-metre high vertical construction, made up of 20 thousand rubber and grease rats, which occupied the Vale do Anhangabaú, in the historic centre of the city of São Paulo.

The idea was born when I discovered that the metropolis has one of the largest rat populations on the planet: 170 million rodents, or 15 per inhabitant; and by the meaning of the word anhangabau, which in Tupi means ''devil's river'', because the Indians believed the place was haunted. Nowadays, the city covers up this polluted river and its contaminated tributaries, which overflow in flood season.

The intervention materializes the nightmare of the exhibition Dreams and Nightmare, held in the city centre, and reveals a black and lightless lighthouse that emerges from the stone floor and exposes the hidden underworld. I opened the show with a performance in Vale do Anhangabaú, in which I applied 100 kilos of grease on the rats in the installation with the spontaneous participation of the public.

Technical Data Sheet

Metal structure, wood, acrylic, rubber mice, grease
9 m (height) x 4 m (diameter)

Vale do Anhangabaú
São Paulo, 2013

Photo: Nathália Abbud

Casa França-Brasil
Rio de Janeiro, 2014