Mateusz Herczka (PL/SE, º1970)

Puddle Drive-Through Simulation
Installation, 2011
Collection of the Verbeke Foundation

For Puddle Drive-Through Simulation, Mateusz Herczka created the biggest artificial killifish habitat ever made. He recreated a puddle which can be easily found in the middle of a road in Guyana, with a truck wheel rolling through it, as it happens every day in South America’s jungles.

Killifishes live in shallow puddles, potholes and other kinds of ephemeral pools throughout both Americas, South Europe, Africa and Asia. To survive, they jump from one puddle to the other. Although many killifish species are known for their beautiful colours, they are difficult to find in aquarium shops. This is due to the fact that it is rather impossible to mass-produce that kind of fish and also because it needs to thrive in conditions which are not consistent with an idea of a cute aquarium. The project reveals how animals infiltrate human daily environment and multiply their chance to survive when biological evolution is often restrained by technological progression.

The project was created during artist’s residency at the Verbeke Foundation in 2011.