Matilde Zagalo  Oliveira
Joined Meer in March 2023
Find out more about Matilde Zagalo Oliveira in
Matilde Zagalo Oliveira

Matilde Z Oliveira was born in Lisbon but at the same time nearby the beach, the trees, the hands, and the bare feet so often placed on the land, the sand, and at the bottom of the sea. She lives with her feet on the ground, but she believes that looking allows us to dream and to reach further.

She studied Liberal Arts at the University of Lisbon, with a specialization in Literature, Philosophy, and African Studies, at the Faculty of Letters. Later she attended the University Libre of Brussels, where she studied Philosophy and International Relations, completing his Master's in Cooperation and Development Studies.

Matilde is deeply interested in people, arts, and dialogue between different cultures. She has worked mainly in human rights, in various regions and contexts, such as Mozambique, Calais Refugee camp, and Sao Tomé.

Besides her work, she is passionate about music, mainly classical and jazz, yoga and surfing, books, landscapes, and journeys that could never end. Matilde has been trying to humanize some regions, reporting, and storytelling in different places as Kenya, Tanzania, Brazil, Jordan, Israel, Palestine, and even New York.

Essentially, she doesn't travel without a pause and a deep breath, notebooks, and a pen: a constant record of people and landscapes. Writing is part of her, and the condition that she believes to be more structural to be able to write is the possibility to look for a long time, to create, and to take care of the silence. The words only appear afterward.

From each journey, there were memories, words, and instants of beauty that she believes to eternalize apart from this silence and that we can't keep just for ourselves. In her last book "White Road", she tries to get in touch with that result of looking at the beauty that so often hurts. Beyond longing and the sea, she believes that there is a very fragile balance between human beings and nature.

Matilde often writes also about joy, but also some pains she observes in others because sensitivity makes us part of who we are. Nowadays, she is based in Brussels, and she believes that distance sometimes hurts, but that we should always keep multiple interests alive and the constant recreation of the ideas that come from us.

Writing is a shield that protects us from life and even from ourselves, but it is also a way to describe and keep the beauty of what is still worth and alive between us. She is deeply grateful to Meer magazine for allowing her to do so.

Articles by Matilde Zagalo Oliveira

Get updates on the Meer