Brazil-based artist Femzor has made a significant name for himself in less than a year through his striking graphics that blend boundaries and genres alike. Though connected by the unified thread of Femz’s signature style, each piece transports the viewer to a different place or different time. With dreams of presenting interactive art in museums, his current trajectory lines him up to achieve that and more.
"If you’re a free-thinking artist, there’s no telling where you will be in 30 years or where your art will be in 30 years."
Give me an overview of your background and who you are.
My name is Matheus, and I’m known as femz/femzor. I am 22 years old and live in São Paulo, Brazil. I also lived in London for a few years where I had a scholarship to study finance until I gave it all up to draw things on my laptop. Due to this pandemic, my passion for coffee and playing games on my phone has reached its peak. Along with that, I have been trying to set up my whole adult life in order; I guess sobriety puts that into focus.
How did you first become interested in art?
A lot of aspects of my life motivated me to exercise my creativeness, and I can never tell which was the most important one when I think about it. From my father being a tattoo artist, to watching cartoons all day, to being introverted and having nothing else to do in class, all aspects of my environment were essential to my development. I remember when I first started sharing my art online back in 2014. I was a big nerd and loved video games, so I wanted to design art for gamers. I grew quickly within that community and was first commissioned in 2015; I used to charge $7 for a drawing made on Microsoft Paint. I moved to London a year later to start University and barely had time to do any art, so I gave up. Some months later, I got kicked out of my house, started doing drugs and got a job as a dishwasher. In the midst of all that chaos, I realized I hated studying finance, so I decided to drop out. From that point on, I had a few more jobs, sometimes 2 at once, but always managed to find time to do art and grow.
When did you realize you could turn art into a career?
By the end of 2019, I realized art could be my main and only job, so I bought a plane ticket back to Brazil and got sober. Now, I’ve been an independent artist for almost a year, and I’m at the peak of my career while constantly growing.
From where do you draw your inspiration?
A lot of elements from my day-to-day life inspire me, from seeing a building on my way to the shop, to a sentence I overheard on the bus, to the random thoughts in my head.. It all really depends on timing, the environment, and how open my mind is to absorbing that inspiration at that moment in time. Lately, I have been inspired by art deco and surrealism. Some of my favorite artists are Salvador Dalí, Pablo Picasso, Tim Burton, Gustav Klimt, Keith Rankin, Ghostemane, and Lil Uzi Vert, among others.
What are your favorite mediums to work with? What have your favorite projects been?
Even though I have tried many mediums in the past, I feel like I can connect myself better to digital art, from illustration to graphic design. I still would like to acquire more knowledge in clothing, music and photography in the future, though. I especially love the latex collection I recently started, which consists of around 15 to 20 artworks so far, based on BDSM culture.
Why do you continue to create?
I don’t have a ready answer for this like most artists, who say it’s what they love or their destiny. I create because I’m curious about what could come of it, and by that I don’t mean I’m solely looking for what the final product of an artwork will be but where this artistic journey might take me. I already know that if you work in a bank for many years, you might be promoted to bank manager, or if you are a chef at a restaurant, eventually you could become head chef. But if you’re a free-thinking artist, there’s no telling where you will be in 30 years or where your art will be in 30 years.
What does the future look like for you?
My expectations of the future always end up being wrong, not in a bad way, but I’m always being hit with surprises along the way. If I’m to guess what my future will be like as a person, I would say I will eventually be living on my own, in a nice flat, with a dog or cat, maybe eating a few more vegetables and travelling more often. Professionally, I want to participate in museum exhibitions, not with canvases or prints, but through more interactive concepts potentially based on technology’s impact or sculptures you can climb. Basically, I would like my future to have nothing to do with what I am doing now.
What is integral to the role of an artist? That is, what does it take to create something meaningful?
Being true to yourself and letting yourself be vulnerable. I still am not good at this, but it’s a good reminder to all artists.
What role does the artist hold in society?
Artists have always been considered outcasts, weirdos, nerds, losers, punks, skaters, or whatever you wanna call it… I like to call it free-thinking. What I’m trying to say is that without artists, we wouldn’t have freedom. The world would be a dusty white canvas.