Dzifa Benson was born in London to Ghanaian parents and grew up in Ghana, Nigeria and Togo. She is an award-winning multidisciplinary artist whose work intersects science, art, technology, the body and ritual which she explores through poetry, prose, theatre, libretto, performance, curation, visual arts, immersive technologies, essays and criticism. She has read and performed her work in many contexts such as Tate Britain, the Dissenters Chapel of Kensal Green Cemetery, BBC Contains Strong Language, the Royal Festival Hall, King’s Place, and in Italy, South Africa, France and Norway.
Her poetry has been most recently anthologised in Staying Human (Bloodaxe), More Fiya! (Canongate) and Part of a Story That Started Before Me (Penguin), and has been recognised with fellowships from Jerwood Compton Poetry and Hedgebrook. She was shortlisted for the inaugural James Berry Poetry Prize in 2021. She publishes essays and criticism covering poetry, theatre, music, fiction and nonfiction in The Financial Times, The Telegraph, The Times Literary Supplement, The Guardian, Wasafiri, Modern Poetry in Translation, Poetry London and The Poetry Review. Her first collection, Monster, is published by Bloodaxe Books in 2024.
Dzifa has had poetry, curatorial and editorial residences at Whitstable Biennale, Pallant House Gallery, Estuary Festival, the Courtauld Institute of Art, Orleans House Gallery, Wakehurst (Kew Gardens), the Royal Geographical Society and Granta. She has also guest lectured at Chelsea College of Art & Design, University of East London, University of West London, Brunel University, and studied dramaturgy at the the John F Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC. She is a poetry editor with Curtis Brown Creative.
Her abridgement and adaption of the National Youth Theatre REP Company’s 2021 production of Othello, in collaboration with Olivier award-winning director Miranda Cromwell, toured the UK and she is currently in the pre-production, dramaturgical stage of her first full length play Black Mozart // White Chevalier. Dzifa has toured South Africa and the UK with the British Council, is a Ledbury Poetry Critic and holds a Masters degree in Text & Performance from RADA and Birkbeck.
Author photo: Naomi Woddis
Books by Dzifa Benson