Fluvial is a meditation of the beaches and villages of interior northern and central Portugal.
Photographed between 2011 and 2017, these fluvial scenes transmute personal geography into a fictional atmosphere. Testifying to the author’s lifelong relationship with northern and central Portuguese riverside beaches and villages, they act not in the manner of a topographic survey, but rather by equating erosion with vision. Just as the river currents have shaped the natural elements, time’s passage appears to have depurated irony off his gaze, predisposing it to form and analogy, and to kindness towards his equals.
Capturing families at informal moments of Portuguese society, predominantly emigrant workers home for summer from northern European countries, bodies, tree trunks and riverbed rocks are made to resemble small sculptures (some of which anthropomorphic); the human body, here almost amphibious, is often reduced to the simple form, to the submerged surface, either adopting the stream bed as an optical instrument, or by shaping it with light.
The human and non-human bodies emerge from chiaroscuro schemes, either as elements of an illusory mise-en-scène, or defamiliarized, reduced to mere form, as if by casting a spell on them.
Realistic yet dreamlike, conveying a pagan sense of nature, creating the atmospheric effect of an infinite Sunday, it reminds one of a summer dream —a visual ode to human leisure.
No Interior da Terra
Vidal, Carlos, in "Sábado", ed. 471, 03/2018
Aqui há uma espécie de praia fluvial, por ela passam figuras "normais" que a fotografia, seu enquadramento e luz, isolamento e olhar para a câmara, torna figuras estranhas, mais amedontradas que medonhas: mesmo a mulher grávida de fato-de-banho negro cujo ventre se apaga no fundo negro da foto é um espectro que não intimida.Fluvial
The look-in-presence as presence: on the singular, on its mystery
The singular flourishes, luminescent but vulnerable, in the female figure that emerges from an absorptive aqueous environment, lugubrious. From the riverbank the observer looks and photographs a woman’s face framed by the oval outline of a shadow, but is halfway hidden by tree branches.Fluvial
Furthermore, this Fluvial series makes an analogy between erosion and vision, based on visual analogies between human bodies and other types of bodies, organic and inorganic. Just as the currents bend tree trunks and shape mineral blocks, which these images depict almost as land art sculptures, Tito Mouraz’s long term relationship with this territory has a depurating, revelatory, function, which makes him perceive human figures first and foremost as being analogous to such natural forms.Fluvial