With a background in fashion design, artist Mafalda Vasconcelos turned to art as a way of exploring the different cultural influences in her life. Born in South Africa and growing up in Mozambique, there is an evidence of African influence through Mafalda’s visual work. Through travel and exploring different cultures, the artist developed a unique artistic style which has a contemporary theme and aesthetic. Now residing in Melbourne, Mafalda continues to explore the female figure and soul, through a multicultural lens and with some fashion elements.


Mafalda's academic background is a BA Hons in Fashion Design by the University of Westminster (UK) and a MA in Entrepreneurship (Fashion) with distinction by the RMIT University (AUS). During her BA Mafalda was contacted by a few fashion brands to create freelance illustration and print works for them. She has also worked for brands like Inditex (Zara and Bershka) and Viktor & Rolf both as a print designer and as a couture studio designer. Upon graduation Mafalda knew that she wanted to pursue art full time as being a fashion designer didn't fulfil her. Mafalda has worked as an artist full-time for 4 years both as an illustrator and now as a painter.


The inspiration behind Mafalda's work is symbolism and spiritualism based in her Mozambican culture. The artworks she creates are based on souls rather than human figures and hence, these artworks don't have human realistic features. Rather, they have stylised and symbolic features that suggest human form and express strong human emotions. Souls are similar to spirits, they transport our energy and emotion and so Mafalda explores that in her art. Using black figures, she portrays African women who have raised her and inspire her everyday. The colourful geometrical shapes and symbols are a language that Mafalda has developed through exploring the visual elements in African art and in her own mixed and diverse background. 


Follow Mafalda's journey in exploring this highly personal art language further and in creating more meaningful art.