Texto: Isis Kanashiro J. A. Soares. Modelagem 3D: Beatriz Barbosa de Lima, David Atalla Aly. Pós-Produção: Luís Felipe Abbud, João Generoso Gonzale.
In 1814, São Paulo received its first monument, an obelisk accompanied by a fountain, installed in the Piques, a square with a spout, where drovers stopped to rest and drink water with their animals and where slaves were bought and sold. A century later, the square which was renamed ‘Largo da Memória’ underwent an urban reform and gained a portico decorated with a tile panel and a new fountain, designed by artist Jose Wasth Rodrigues, who also did the coat of arms of the city of São Paulo. Designed by engineer Victor Dubugras, the city’s new landmark was part of a set of monuments in celebration of Brazil’s Centenary of Independence. Dedicated to the Zeal of Public Good, the obelisk and square evoke the memory of all whose lives have been inscribed there: from the drovers who used it as a rest stop and as a place for their animals to quench their thirst in the fountain, and the enslaved who were bought and sold there as merchandise, to those who now dance samba at the surrounding bars and the homeless who sleep on those grounds. In 2021, amidst the Covid-19 pandemic, 500 candles were lit on the steps of the square, one for every thousand people who died in the country, victims of Covid-19, by protesters demanding the president’s official removal.
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