Die Kunst des Spiels

Name: Deborah
Alter: 38
Artist, teacher and creative enthusiast
(Aktueller) Ort: Berlin

Deborah ist in Brasilien aufgewachsen und ihre neugierige Lebenslust brachte sie nach Europa. „Der Ernst muss raus aus der Kunst“, ist ihr Plädoyer und mittels Tech Art schafft sie offene Räume der Neugier und des Entdeckens. Sie liebt das Spielen und verbunden mit Kreativität, schafft Deborah virtuelle und ganz reale Verknüpfungen. In ihren Workshops lernen Kinder wie man Roboter baut und Papierflieger mit kleinen Motoren funktionieren.


1. When did you decide to live this lifestyle (that you’re living now)? Was there an “aha” moment?

When I was 18, I had to run away from home. I couldn’t cope with the oppression and the way my family was conditioned to live. At that moment, I decided no one could tell me how to live my life.

2. What inspires you about your work?

I always feel inspired by the way children create. When we are children, we are connected to the truth of who we are in a powerful way. As we grow older, the outside structures make most of us disconnect from that truth and we start behaving and making decisions based mostly on patterns of behaviors imposed on us. So working with creative development with children, opening space for them to express themselves and empowering them in that process is incredibly inspiring for me.

3. What is your biggest fear?

To be forced to live in a way that is not true for me. The older I get, the more I realize how difficult it is to find our space in the world, and how easy it is to get lost in the collective delusions of what it means to be successful and live a full life.

4. In which field do you want to be (more) independent?

Right now, I want more financial independence. I live in a “one day at a time” kind of situation, where I never really know how I’ll pay the bills next. I consider myself incredibly lucky to live in Berlin (being born in a very poor background in Brazil), but this is one of the biggest struggles in my life, financial stability. I’m sure a lot of artists will understand and relate.

5. What does freedom mean to you?

I love this question, because freedom meant so many different things in the course of my life (and I feel it’ll keep evolving). Freedom for me now is a state of mind (or no mind), is not an outside phenomena, it’s internal. The more I stay in a state of awareness, the more I feel free. Free from the insanity of my mind, my fears and the beliefs I carried without knowing. And of course, that reflects back in the world, in the way I perceive my work, my life and my purpose.

6. What is your favorite activity?

I have many favorite activities, like watching cartoons (any Futurama fans out there?), reading, playing video games, drawing, spending time with people I love and more recently I started to study and read cards and astrology. Learning is one of my favorite activities. Learning about myself, my friends, the world and using my knowledge to creatively empower other humans.

7. Which animal would you like to be and why?

My artist name is Tartaruga Feliz, which translates to “Happy Turtle”, so yes, I’d love to be a turtle. To always have my home with me, to be strong and independent, and also to live more than a hundred years are some of the reasons. The rest I’ll leave to your imagination!

8. What kind of togetherness do you want to live in? Existential? Global? Local? – what does community mean to you?

I feel a sense of togetherness anywhere I go. Especially after traveling so much around the world to work with children, I feel that we already live in a Global community and I love that. What I find interesting observing all the social movements happening now is how easy it can be to get lost in them. I refuse to identify myself with any sort of ideology or group. I prefer to live on the simplicity of the here and now, everyday being a step closer to becoming who I am.

9. Who are your three heroes?

Jim Morrison – for his talented bravery in being who he was, despite the huge constraints of his generation.
Maria Montessori – for her genius insights in childhood education and her inspiring life story.
Eckhart Tolle – for his support in my awakening process and consequent radical change in my outlook and relationship with life.

10. What event in the past ten years can you say changed your life – or at least your outlook from your inner life?

On my first solo show as an artist in Berlin, I discovered that what I actually loved doing was not exhibiting and participating in the social validations that comes with that choice. What I loved was working with the children, playing with them. That’s when I decided to integrate my practice as an artist in creating workshops for children as a means to make space and freedom for their expression, which is so rare in the education system that most of us go through. This was the biggest and most rewarding shift I had over the past ten years.

11. What do you wish for in the future?

My wish is to go live in nature, to have a little house in the woods and live my life as simply as I can. To have strength to keep moving forward and become the human I’m here to be. And to keep empowering other humans on their path in this process.

Thank you for these beautiful questions! 🙂