Syl Loko

Painter / Sculptor | Benin

Syl Loko (1996) creates paintings, mixed media canvases and sculptures. On top of colourfully painted backgrounds, he creates figures made out of nails, cans and thread. 

“My drawings, paintings and sculptures represent subjects that resonate with memory by establishing a dialogue between culture, lived experiences and the imagination.

Indeed, the theme of my work is the indescribable poetry of these cultural subjects, revealed by painting, sculpture and drawing”.


Syl Loko (1996) is an emerging contemporary visual artist from Benin, who graduated in visual art at Inmaac National Institute of Crafts of Archaeological and Cultural Art at the University of Abomey-Calavi (Benin). He lives and works in Dèkoungbé in the town of Abomey-Calavi.

His drawings, paintings and sculptures represent subjects that resonate with memory by establishing a dialogue between culture, lived experiences and imagination. He is inspired by the way experiences and decisions form a human being into who they are. This has led him to his technique of using plywood and nails.

For him each nail or point represents the pain, suffering and pitfalls that people live through. Like the nails withstand the blows of the hammer, we as human beings must be like these nails in order to be able to face the challenges that life throws our way.

Loko started to exhibit early on during his studies and has been participating in various exhibitions at independent art spaces and festivals in Cotonou and online galleries.

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#Faces, OpenArtExchange, Schiedam, The Netherlands


Wékré, Marché d’Art Contemporains de Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso)


L’ART’TRINE, exposition vente aux enchères à la maison rouge Cotonou

Exposition collective du SPECIAL COVID-19 BOULEV’ART au carrefour Ste Cécile Cotonou


Special Boulev’Art against  COVID-19, Centre Arts et des Cultures LOBOZOUNKPA, Cotonou, Benin   

Open studio No to violence against women and girls, Awobobo Festival d’Arts Plastiques 8th edition, Cotonou, Benin 

ArtemisExpo n°4, Expo Artemis

Exposition collective virtuel, Coronavirus le mal interdit,


Exposition collective au Centre culturel Français à l’occasion de la fête, noël des enfants, Cotonou

International Day of Visual Arts Benin 6th edition, MB Hôtel de Ganvié, Cotonou, Benin

Rencontre, Chinese Cultural Center, Cotonou, Benin

The other Africa, Afrikan’Art Association, Place des Martyrs, Cotonou, Benin


International theatre festival, FITHEB, Cotonou, Benin


Prom’Art, Campus University of Abomey-Calavi, Cotonou, Benin

Residencies and workshops


Résidence de création artistique LES SENTINELLES DU CLIMAT à OUADADA, Centre Culturel, Artistique et Tourisme


Residence related to Special Boulev’Art against COVID-19, Centre Arts et des Cultures LOBOZOUNKPA, Cotonou, Benin 


Drawing workshop exchange with students from the Institute de Haute Couture et de Perfectionnement-Christ Fashion


Sculpting internship of 3 months at studio of Benjamin Deguenon, Cotonou, Benin


Workshop by traveling plastic artist Achille ZOHOUN