Kheraba Traoré

As ILAB-Design continues to share inspiring stories about various artists from Africa, we are delighted to present KHERABA TRAORÉ

@Kheraba Traoré, born in 1987 in Senegal, attended the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Dakar and decided to dedicate his work to children and to denounce through his works the violations of children’s rights by adults. His commitment is particularly dedicated to street children, the talibés.

Entrusted by their families, often living in poor and rural settings these children are sent to Koranic schools (Daaras) to receive a religious education.  These talibé children are most often boys aged between 4 and 15. In order to pay for their education, the children have to perform domestic tasks. They are most often forced to beg and suffer numerous abuses which  humanitarian organisations have regularly denounced. Although the Senegalese government had committed in 2016 to end this modern slavery, the global economic crisis and the Covid 19 pandemic have slowed down the application of laws punishing this type of child trafficking.


In celebration of The International Children’s rights Day on 20 November 2021 which will close the exhibition, we are delighted to exhibit this artist who was inspired by the 7Y in the Wolof language of Senegal beginning with Y: Yar : Yiir : Yor : Yedd : Yemale : Yee : Yeug which mean Educate… Protect… Care…. To counsel… To guarantee rights… To awaken and give love and affection to a child and therefore it helps us to reflect on the social stigma and systemic violence that many street children face in most urban environments in Africa.

Because this artist’s voice needs to be heard, his creations have migrated north (now at ILAB Design Galerie in Switzerland) to illustrate how art can help convey the questioning of children’s rights beyond the UN Charter.