Cecilia Ferreira


Artist Statement

The source of my art is my subconscious, feelings in the mind. It seems to me that the subconscious consists of separate channels, realms, which make my art morph, flow and stop. I am not really interested in the source as such. Inspiration to me can be a colour, a shape, a fragrance inside me.

Sometimes I believe my art is a curse. I am tied to it forever. I have a strong love-hate relationship with my art.

For the past decade my work has encircled humanity: our behaviour, our frailty, the way we move, colours transpiring through us, the way we taste, love, hate. Us living and then dying.

Often I try to portray people as they appear during the darker moments of our existence. I do this in a ‘messy’ way and splash, scratch out etc. I show no mercy for my surface.

I try to be truthful, no shiny veils of lies. As a professional artist I can only be very personal. Impersonal art is only skill.

I love the texture of art materials on my fingers.
I love the smell. It means it is how I transcend.


Cecilia Ferreira is a South African born artist currently living with her family in Maputo, Mozambique. She completed one year at the Foundation School of Art in Observatory (Cape Town) before she returned to her home town, Port Elizabeth, to finish her studies at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan. Cecilia obtained her National Diploma in fine art in 2000 (majoring in printmaking and painting with a distinction in figure drawing) and moved to Portugal in 2001 where she resided until 2007.

During the Portugal years, the artist spent some time in isolation due to the tremendous language barrier, cultural leap and home sickness. This seclusion fueled a large body of works with themes mostly dealing with people in the streets, restaurants and bars of Lisbon. Some of the works were sold in the streets of Cascais during the summer and some were exhibited and sold in Passe Partout gallery (Oeiras) and Da’arte gallery (Cascais) during collective exhibitions.

In 2005 the artist started finding exposure online, contributing to numerous art blogs and uploading works on various art websites. It was in the same year that the artist bought her first digital camera, promoting an endless line of photographic self-portraits to follow. She completed a series of digital photographs focusing on the graffiti and ruins in Lisbon city. The online response to her work has been tremendously positive, encouraging her to contribute to online art and literature magazines with her images and poetry. Her interest in poetry has grown over the years and has recently started stimulating numerous visual works.

Returning to Africa in 2007 brought on a creative explosion for the artist. She started exploring with challenging themes such as neuroses, sexuality and topics concerning mostly the psychology of females. In 2008 she completed a series of gloss magazine manipulations called “Issues”, touching on modern day issues women in general have to deal with such as anorexia, vanity, vulnerability etc.

The artist was recently a finalist in the Women and Boundaries photographic competition in Maputo, held by the French cultural centre. She was also a finalist in the 2009 Sasol New Signatures exhibition in Pretoria.
Cecilia held her first solo exhibition this year with a body of work called “Eyrie”, which is based on Dutch poet Joop Bersee’s poetry book “Eyrie”. It is a milestone for the artist, show casing the pinnacle of a decade’s artistic development.

*Other pages featuring Cecilia Ferreira's work:

-Flash Intro for Issue 20


Copyright © 2010 Cecilia Ferreira