Theresa Traore Dahlberg Beckers Art Award 2019

2 February 2019 24 March 2019

Scholarship exhibition
Main hall, Färgfabriken

The 32nd Beckers Art Award – a grant of 200,000 SEK – will this year be awarded to the artist Theresa Traore Dahlberg, born 1983. She has studied  at the New School, in New York, Stockholm Academy of Dramatic Arts and at the Royal Institute of Art in Stockholm.

Photo: Olof Grind
Copper and Cotton, 2018. Photo: Olof Grind
Photo: Olof Grind
Cotton and Cotton, 2018. Photo: Olof Grind
Copper and Ashes, 2018. Photo: Olof Grind

Traore Dahlberg investigates, through installations, sculptures and video, parts of Burkina Faso’s cultural history, Swedish industry and the value of work and goods that are put in relation to place, time and context.

Traore Dahlberg is also exhibiting a parallel exhibition called Seydoni Pionnier de l’industrie musicale au Burkina at the Musée national du Burkina Faso, Ouagadougou. The two exhibitions communicate with each other through the works shown at each location. At Musée national du Burkina Faso, Traore Dahlberg has installed parts of his father’s, Seydou Richard Traore-Seydonis, old cassette factory and music studio Seydoni. Through video, the exhibition in Ouagadougou can also take place at Färgfabriken.

About the artist

Theresa Traore Dahlberg is a visual artist and filmmaker who formulates and mediates engaging complex, narratives through sculpture, photography, and film. Her films narrate stories in the expanded field of documentary including themes such as representation of the other, by questioning how individuals, events and places are perceived, interpreted and understood. The artist finds her working material in everyday life, encounters with people from different places play an important role. Traore Dahlberg’s sculptural works often take a point of departure in the material itself, as a physical material and as a container of histories, ideas, and notions. The artist pays attention to production, working conditions, workers identities and fates of life, creating art that reflects the complexity of class, women’s roles, and post-colonialism. Traore Dahlberg draws from her own experiences of being anchored in two political and social cultures, Sweden and Burkina Faso, and from the implication of living in a contemporary European context.

Traore Dahlberg has exhibited internationally and in Sweden, in such venues as Zeller van Almsick, Vienna, Austria (2018) and Uppsala konstmuseum, Sweden (2018). She has been awarded the Tempo Documentary Short Award for her film The Ambassador’s wife (2018) which was also shown at the Toronto Film festival 2018. Her first film Taxi Sister (2011) was about the everyday life of a Senegalese female taxi driver, and her film Ouaga Girls (2017) was her first feature-length documentary. Additionally, Traore Dahlberg initiated and founded the artist collective OUFF in 2018.

Further reading

Jury statement

In the Wake of Shifts and Memory
Exhibition text by Ashik Zaman, editor and writer


Beckers Art Award was established in 1987 and has since then proven to have a remarkable ability to identify young talents on the brink of a breakthrough in their careers. The winner is awarded a grant, which from this year has been raised from 150,000 to 200,000 SEK, and a solo exhibition that has, since 2001, been arranged and held in collaboration with Färgfabriken.

Jury: Jenny Lindén Urnes, Mårten Castenfors och Magnus Jensner

Key partners