Grito painted a cool new mural on Sunday that illustrates the process of making toilet paper and the damage paper mills and the industry can do to the environment. Grito told Buenos Aires Street Art about his latest creation he has called ‘Papelin’.
‘”Papelin’ is a joke about paper (papel), it’s a stupid name. The idea is to show the paper making process in general, how something natural turns into something as insignificant as paper to clean your bum with that is thrown into the river and continues to pollute the environment,” explained Grito. “It (the paper making process) doesn’t only destroy whole forests to make paper but pollutes rivers, poohing on everything and everyone.”
The pulp mill, UPM, near Fray Bentos has been at the centre of a controversy between Uruguay and Argentina over claims by residents in the Argentine town of Gualeguaychú that the plant on the other side of the River Uruguay that flows into the Rio de la Plata was contaminating the water. And the Riachuelo that also flows into the Rio de la Plata is one the most contaminated rivers in Argentina where the people who live nearby suffer from skin and respiratory problems. “The Rio de La Plata (on the Argentine side) is a clear example of how people do what they want in plain view of everyone,” said Grito. “The artwork is talking about all the paper mills in the world and the big businesses, not only the Argentine ones, as it’s not just here that these things happen. It’s really sad to see how these things happen all over the world and nobody listens to the few people who fight against it.”
By painting in the street, Grito hopes his artworks will raise more awareness about how people can affect the world around them. “I’m not going to change a lot with this but it’s good if I can show the reality and generate discomfort or teach people what is going on. In Argentina there is a long way to go, people chuck away paper in the street dipping it out of a bin from the window of their car, if everyday people do this, imagine what the big companies do.”
Grito added: “The truth is that I’m not into politics and I don’t belong to any political party or anything, but one day a good friend told me that it’s good to draw and paint on the computer but nobody other than a few friends see it, in the street everyone sees it whether you like it or not. So in this way I go out and paint in the street and it gives me a lot of satisfaction and is good for my soul trying to say something, leaving a message whether it is beautiful or ugly.”
“To begin with I painted things that came into my head at that moment or in the way that the wall directed me, but a little while ago I realized that I can say something besides painting and having a good time, so I’ve started to paint ideas and thoughts. Not everyone is going to like what one has to say but that is also a good thing and if it teaches someone something or makes them think. I’ll carry on painting what I think.”
All photos © Buenos Aires Street Art