Restless Jo and I must have been following in each others footsteps back in November as a few days before she captured the beginnings of some great murals on the walls of the Museu do Rio in Guerreiros do Rio, we had also passed by. I had failed though to take any photographs on that occasion, consequently by the time we passed by again there was more scaffolding and the cat had appeared.
The murals, Olhares sobe o Guadiana, are another great Associação Satori project (see also the murals in Olhão) and were commissioned for Alcoutim’s Festival do Contrabando. Last year’s festival, as in 2020, had been affected by Covid19, but the innovative town council in Alcoutim came up with a great variation Tráfico de Artes no Guadiana. We might miss the fun of the music, the smugglers and walking across the Guadiana but two years of arts is going to leave a wonderful and longer lasting legacy than the usual festival itself. They certainly have already drawn us back again as when I heard the murals have been finished in mid December, I couldn’t wait to return to our favourite cafe on the banks of the Rio Guadiana for a pre walk cake and coffee. The cafe, you see doesn’t just have great cake it is also opposite the museum!
The mural artists are João Frazão aka Homo Sapien and Renato Brito aka Exame de Consciência. I’ve yet to find anything more on the first artist, but the latter is based in the Algarve and it would seem from their Instagram account created the fishing hands and cat. The cat you may recall from Jo’s post began with all those amazing scribbles and notations, but now look at it.
In November I was intrigued by the blank space, and wondered if it was intentional. It wasn’t as now there is a kingfisher, its Portuguese name Guarda-rios probably explains why this was chosen out of all the birdlife we see on this river. There again the colours do work fabulously.
I just love the way Portugal has embraced street art in rural areas as well as cities, and that local government are using it to capture and share the stories of the local community as well as to promote their villages, towns and cities. Long may it continue.