In 2019, the city of São Paulo hosted the travelling exhibition about the polluted Tietê River. The 40-meter-long inflatable work sailed along the entire length of the capital's main river, as a warning to society about the current water degradation and the need to recover this important urban element of São Paulo, which could be integrated into everyday life as a space for urban mobility.
The intervention, composed by a sculpture in the shape of a freshwater fish of the Pintado species, has lived in the region before the water was contaminated. According to the artist, the exhibition symbolized the Piracema phenomenon, which in the Tupi language means "ascent of the fish", when the fish swim against the current to perpetuate the species.
"The Tietê River begins 20 km from the Atlantic Ocean, but flows inland and was fundamental for the Indians and Bandeirantes, as well as in the formation of the city of São Paulo itself. The "Pintado" will remind us of the lost colours and shapes of the real Tietê and also of a future with more oxygen. That is why its huge open mouth wants to breathe".
Srur tells that he was impressed when he discovered, during the week of assembling the work with the river dredging workers, that there is still a species of fish similar to the Pintado that inhabits the Tietê in the capital.
"When I saw the fish, I had a mix of sadness and hope; of seeing the fight for life and the strength of nature in any circumstance.
During the last week of the exhibition, when the Tietê River Day is celebrated, Srur sailed along with the work. The idea was to provoke reflection, also pertinent, about mobility within the river.
"The Tietê River is navigable and this would bring integration with the city's daily life. I suspect that the Pintado will reach its destination sooner than thousands of drivers stuck in the traffic on the marginal roads."
Inflatable, flotation platform and solar energy system with leds.
38 x 12 x 7 metres
"I will be the first Paulistano to fish in the Pinheiros River in the 21st century."
In2017, Pintado sailed for the first time over the polluted waters of the Pinheiros River.
As in Rio Tietê (2019), the intervention provoked society's gaze towards water contamination. In this edition, the work used solar energy to keep the sculpture inflated during navigation.
Srur conceived the visual show Peixaria, at the Pinheiros CPTM train station, where more than 200,000 people circulate per day. The installation was composed of fishmonger's counters with sculptures made with rubbish that referred to fish species. The exhibition also promoted free workshops directed to the spontaneous public.
"If society is incapable of taking care of the Pinheiros River, Pintado reminds us that art is a possible way. The artist does not give the fish, he teaches how to fish."