Theresa Traore Dahlberg - Idrix: Stockholm

17 November - 22 December 2022
Andréhn-Schiptjenko is proud to announce Theresa Traore Dahlberg’s first solo show with the gallery, Idrix
There is nothing new under the sun, but there are new suns.
― Octavia E. Butler
To make a new, never-before-seen object is like creating a new world or even a new planet or solar system. Like Science Fiction, Theresa Traore Dahlberg’s work plays with visions of alternative futures and new sociopolitical structures. This correlation is manifested in her first solo show at the gallery, including sculpture, glass objects and photography.
A recurring feature in Theresa Traore Dahlberg’s work is the close attention paid to different materials and how they can interact and transform into something else. Traore Dahlberg draws from her personal experience of being anchored in two sociopolitical cultures, Sweden and Burkina Faso. Her installations, glass works and bronze sculptures result from various historically and personally charged materials or objects, that have been altered through different processes and become infused with new meanings and stories.
Traore Dahlberg has collaborated with a bronze foundry in Burkina Faso and developed sculptures based on the Senufo bird figure and African fables. The bird’s shape is inspired both by Futurism and her grandmother’s stories. A Senufo bird refers to the physical and intellectual aspects of life, signifying intellectual power in particular, but also alluding to the dual forces of the male and female. Cast in the same bronze foundry is Hakili – The Hare, a series of bronze sculptures inspired by an enigmatic hare that Traore Dahlberg found in the collection of The Museum of Ethnography in Stockholm. Hares are common protagonists in African folktales, often playing the role of the trickster who uses cunning to affect larger and more powerful beings, thus humorously shaping the outcome of the narrative.
In Traore Dahlberg’s glass works, various materials are fused into the glass. Her Copper and Glass works are based on industrially produced circuit boards – once valuable electronic components that have now become obsolete. Melted between sheets of glass, the copper takes on new forms like universal fractal patterns. Suddenly this industrial material is transformed into something primal and connected to nature. Her ambiguously titled White Material glass series instead fuses organic material in the form of cotton yarns into the glass. The white cotton is hand-spun by women in Burkina Faso who have been excluded from their communities after being accused of witchcraft. The white cotton thread burns inside the glass and becomes black charcoal within the pockets of air between the glass sheets.
Finally, the exhibition presents a photograph of long trails in red soil with seemingly no beginning or end. The traces lead nowhere but anywhere; they are ongoing, a memory of a movement.
Theresa Traore Dahlberg (b.1983 in Värnamo, Sweden) resides and works in Stockholm, Sweden. She studied 16 mm experimental film at the New School in New York and the Stockholm Academy of Dramatic Arts. In 2017, she graduated with a Master of Fine Art from The Royal Institute of Art in Stockholm. Traore Dahlberg has had numerous solo exhibitions and participated in group exhibitions such as Rock my Soul II, curated by Isaac Julien and presented in Eva Livijn’s house-gallery, Stockholm (2022); CAAM - Atlantic Center of Modern Art, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (2022); Havremagasinet, Boden, Sweden (2022); Kalmar Konstmuseum, Sweden (2021); Institut Suédois, Paris (2019); Musée National du Burkina Faso (2019). She received Beckers Art Award in 2019, which entailed two extensive solo exhibitions at Färgfabriken, Stockholm and Höganäs Museum, Höganäs, Sweden.
Traore Dahlberg has been awarded the Tempo Documentary Short Award for her film The Ambassador’s Wife (2018), which was also shown at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), Berlin Critics’ Week, Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival and Telluride Film Festival. This film was likewise included in the program for Artist Films International and was, as such, exhibited at Bonniers Konsthall, Whitechapel Gallery, Hammer Museum, Para/Site Art Space, Ballroom Marfa, and Istanbul Modern.
Her first film, Taxi Sisters (2011), portrayed the everyday life of a Senegalese female taxi driver, and her first feature-length documentary, Ouaga Girls (2017), depicted the everyday life of a group of teenage girls becoming car mechanics in Burkina Faso.
Traore Dahlberg’s installation Transition (2022) is currently exhibited at Centro Atlántico de Arte Moderno. This work is based on local industrial material from the island where the museum is located, and the exhibition is on display until February 2023.
For information about the exhibition, please contact Hanna Lundberg at
Installation Views