top of page

Interview with contemporary artist Fabiolla Loureiro

Fabiolla Loureiro, a contemporary artist based in São Paulo, Brazil, has dedicated 15 years to the study of street photography. Her extensive travels, spanning over 30 countries, have granted her the freedom to explore the essence of this art form. With a penchant for cold nights, noir environments, and rainy seasons, her work encapsulates the beauty of solitude and introspection.

Inspired by renowned photographers such as Daido Moriyama, Robert Capa, and Saul Leiter, Fabiolla's black and white compositions feature blurry silhouettes, high contrasts, and symmetrical, poetic scenes. Urban chaos and the interwar period serve as constant sources of inspiration.

Over the past five years, Fabiolla has exhibited her work in London, Bologna, Madrid, and Paris, following her initial solo exhibitions in São Paulo in 2016. Despite minimal formal training—a mere three months at Focus Photography in São Paulo— Fabiolla's journey as an autodidact photographer has been marked by recognition. In 2018/2019, she received the Artist of the Year Award from the Circle Foundation for the Arts in Lyon and the Excellence Award from Trevisan International Art in Bologna.

Since December 2019, Fabiolla has been a part of the Singulart artists team in Paris, now

extending her reach to Saatchi in California. Fabiolla's work resonates internationally, finding a place in private collections across the United States, Germany, Brazil, Japan, France, Italy, the United Kingdom, and Switzerland.

Fabiolla Loureiro
Fabiolla Loureiro

Fabiolla, you've mentioned being drawn to the solitary moments of everyday life, especially in urban settings. Can you expand on how you capture these moments of introspection amidst the chaos, and what draws you to these scenes?

In our fast-paced world saturated with information and social media, finding balance amidst the constant barrage can be challenging. For me, the chaos of cosmopolitan cities

offers a unique opportunity to observe people in moments of solitude or isolation—

distinct yet interconnected experiences. Loneliness is the ache of needing someone despite being alone, while solitude is the peaceful embrace of one's own company.

Our mindset determines whether we succumb to the despair of loneliness or revel in the

tranquility of solitude. When I capture people's silhouettes on bustling streets, I feel a

profound connection with them. I ponder: What emotions are they experiencing? Are they joyful, heartbroken, lost in thought, or lost in love? Perhaps they're part of a couple,

physically together yet emotionally distant.

Observing an elderly person deep in contemplation, I wonder about their life's journey—

regrets, triumphs, and missed opportunities. In some way, people connect with my photography because they see reflections of themselves. Through my lens, I capture fragments of my own experiences, inviting viewers to explore their own emotions and


In essence, my photography serves as a mirror—a reflection of the human condition and

the myriad emotions that bind us together in our shared journey through life.

Fabiolla Loureiro
In a client’s house, with Rain Series

Your work is inspired by the likes of Daido Moriyama, Robert Capa, and Saul Leiter, and features a distinct noir aesthetic. How have these photographers influenced your approach?

Capa's daring spirit, immortalized in his iconic images from the frontlines, resonates with me on a profound level. His ability to convey the human experience with such authenticity and depth has forever changed the way I approach photography. Daido Moriyama is a major influence, as I love the way he works with textures: blur, noise, and

high contrast of black and white. The ordinary suddenly becomes extraordinary through his lens, and that is what I strive to bring to my work - the ability to transform the ordinary into the extraordinary. Moments that resonate with us. Saul Leiter brings elegance, a noir atmosphere, and timelessness. I appreciate it when people see my photos and are unable to decipher which year they were taken. Were they taken recently or 20/30/50 years ago? All of them serve as a constant source of study and a reminder of the power of visual storytelling and the responsibility we, as photographers, bear to bear witness to the world around us.

Fabiolla Loureiro
In a client’s house, with São Paulo Series

And how do you incorporate elements of noir into your own compositions?

Incorporating elements of noir into my compositions is a deliberate and nuanced process. I find that by utilizing techniques such as contrast, shadow play, and luminosity, I can create dramatic contrasts and mystery within my scenes. Additionally, I find it essential to be in a cosmopolitan city during the winter season, with rainy days and nights, or snowy conditions. Winter serves as a crucial element in my photography, as I am drawn to the silhouettes adorned with umbrellas, hats, coats, and the elegance that emerges through black silhouettes.

Ultimately, my goal is to transport viewers into a world of intrigue and mystery, where the boundaries between light and dark blur, and the narrative possibilities are endless. By incorporating elements of noir into my compositions, I aim to engage the imagination and evoke emotional resonance, inviting viewers to explore the depths of the human experience.

Fabiolla Loureiro
Solo exhibition in São Paulo, Paris Series

Winter and rain are pivotal elements in your photography, adding depth and a timeless atmosphere to your work. Can you discuss how you use these elements to enhance the emotional impact of your images and the technical challenges they may present?

Winter has long held a cherished place in my heart, a passion somewhat unusual for someone from Brazil. Nevertheless, that's precisely the case for me. My photography centers around street scenes, drawing heavily from the influences of European and Asian photographers, complemented by a profound admiration for Russian literature, encompassing the works of Dostoevsky, Turgenev, Tolstoy and Pushkin. These literary and artistic influences imbue my work with a profound emotional depth. Yet, with winter comes its own set of technical challenges, particularly the task of keeping my camera dry amidst the season's downpours. Rarely equipped with an umbrella, capturing moments in winter conditions becomes a test of resilience.

I vividly recall my experiences in Moscow and Saint Petersburg during the winter of 2016—a demanding yet undeniably rewarding journey. Recently in Paris, where I've just returned from, the rainy days and nights cast a melancholic and noir atmosphere over the city. Despite the adversities posed by winter conditions, they only serve to deepen my appreciation for the craft and the captivating beauty of the winter city landscape.

Despite minimal formal training, you've achieved significant recognition in the art world. Can you share insights into your journey as an autodidact photographer and how this self-directed learning process has shaped your artistic vision?

My journey as an autodidact photographer has been intimately intertwined with my love for traveling. While I may have had minimal formal training, my experiences on the road and the photographers I’ve mentioned have been my greatest teachers, shaping my artistic vision in profound ways. Every journey I embark on becomes an opportunity to immerse myself in new cultures, landscapes, and perspectives. Through my lens, I seek to capture the essence of each place I visit, to distill the beauty and complexity of the world into moments frozen in time. The self-directed learning process has been my constant companion throughout this journey.

Without the confines of a classroom, I've been free to explore photography on my own terms, to experiment, fail, and grow at my own pace. Freedom is crucial to my photography; therefore, I embark on almost 100% of my travels and photography journeys alone. Traveling has taught me to see the world with fresh eyes, to find beauty in the ordinary and extraordinary alike. It's fueled my curiosity, beyond pushing me to venture beyond the beaten path in search of stories waiting to be told. This process has honed my technical skills, yes, but more importantly, it has deepened my understanding of the power of photography as a storytelling medium. Recognition in the art world has been a humbling validation of this journey. It's a testament to the transformative power of self-directed learning and the boundless potential of passion and curiosity.

My photography is not just about capturing images—it's about capturing moments, emotions, and connections. It's about sharing stories and experiences that transcend borders and languages. I love this mix of people from all over. One of my main obsessions is taking trips on the Paris Metro, where I can see people from everywhere, all the time, and gaze into their faces, pondering... And for me, traveling and photography will always be at the heart of it all—an endless source of inspiration, discovery, and growth.

You strive to capture the beauty and complexity of solitary existence in your work. What message or feelings do you hope to evoke in your viewers when they engage with your photographs, and how do you select the moments or scenes that best convey this theme?

My hope is that through my images, viewers will feel a profound sense of understanding and empathy for the solitary figures captured within them. I want them to recognize the universal truths and emotions that bind us all, regardless of background or circumstance. When selecting moments or scenes to convey this theme, I'm drawn to instances where solitude reveals its many facets—moments of quiet reflection, moments of resilience, moments of vulnerability.

These are the moments that speak volumes, where the human spirit shines brightest amidst the shadows. I seek out scenes that convey a sense of intimacy and authenticity, where the nuances of emotion are palpable and the beauty of solitude is laid bare. Whether it's a solitary figure lost in thought on a crowded street or a quiet moment of contemplation in a deserted landscape, each scene is chosen for its ability to evoke a visceral response in the viewer.

Ultimately, my goal is to create images that resonate on a deeply personal level, that transcend language and culture to touch the hearts and minds of all who encounter them. Through the lens of solitude, I hope to inspire reflection, empathy, and a renewed appreciation for the beauty and complexity of the human experience.

More info:



bottom of page