Teddy De Souza

About Teddy de Souza

Teddy de Souza is a Portuguese artist who specializes in painting. She is currently based in the UK studying at the University of Leeds. Inspired by 18th Century Romantic artists, Teddy de Souza studies various painting techniques and uses gestural marks to portray her emotions and inner impulses. Her practice aims to depict the feeling of suffocation through gestural marks and play off colour to point out the harsh actualities of pollution. Her palette is informed by the colour coded Air Quality Index (AQI) that indicates the highest level of toxicity in the air. Working with these colours, she draws a direct connection to the subject matter.

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Her paintings “Air 1&2” represent the toxins present in the modern aerosphere that are invisible to the naked eye. At first glance, her paintings look aesthetic, opposing the dark realities that they are concerned with; a contemporary climate devastated by human greed and carelessness.

It is important for Teddy to adapt to shifts and changes as the painting takes form. She builds on lots of layers to stay flexible, and to properly communicate her emotions onto the canvas. Every element thereby becomes a working constituent of the painting. Using abstraction, these paintings serve as her response to the gruesome nature that the environment is now in due to extensive human consumption.

The paintings are also informed by landscape motifs that progressively become more ambiguous. It is important for me to see, through my paintings, the emotions I was feeling during creation. I hope that the viewer can read my state of mind in the resulting paint marks. In my own way, I use paint to highlight the grotesque nature that the environment is in today. I seek to challenge perceptions of our place in the world, its ecosystems, and how we might connect with them. My primary goal is to encourage a conversation around the environment, and I hope a by-product of this will lead to positive environmentalism.