«The illiterate of the future, it has been said, will not be the man who cannot read the alphabet, but the one who cannot take a photograph. But must we not also count as illiterate the photographer who cannot read his own pictures?»
Walter Benjamin commenting a quotation by László Moholy-Nagy, in Short History of Photography, 1931.
A Masterklass unique in its approach of contemporay photography, proposing a one year series of group and individual encounters. The specificity lays in the fact that each participant is being offered an individual program lead by two masters of photography, both as renowned as appreciated internationally, Nestan NIJARADZE and Klavdij SLUBAN.
Le Masterklass takes place in the heart of Paris, in a spacious and luminous artist loft from December 2015 to November 2016.
Le Masterklass is made of 4 group meetings throughout the year, but most specially of an individual coaching, according to the evolution of each participant’s evolution and creation..
In one word, a tailor-made Masterklass.
Based on the importance of the individual meetings that will shape the direction of the one year long project, the group meetings will be an opportunity, first of all, to have the pleasure of meeting the other members of Le Masterklass, then to submit the evolution of the project, with group criticism, crticial but always constructive.
The individual coaching is the guiding light of this one year guidance Nestan and Klavdij provide each participant with, with a total involvment to bring each participant to one’s own personal photographic expression.
This personal writing can be achieved only by taking into account both the participant’s inner world as well as the world the participant lives in. To find the right distance, the right approach, the right way of giving shape to one’s own feelings, editing will be the key to all the questions.
Nestan NIJARADZE, co-founder and artistic director of the TBILISI PHOTO FESTIVAL, is currating international exhibitions and deeply invested in promoting author documentary photographers from the Caucasus region. The TPF was founded in 2010 in partnership with the Rencontres d’Arles and collaborates regularily with such agencies as Magnum or Noor, as well as with major museums, Institutions and galeries in Europe, in the Caucasus region, Iran and the Persian Gulf.
Nestan Nijaradze is an expert in portfolio reviewing in the most prestigious festivals, writes about photography and leads TV broadcasts on the Georgian National Televesion on culture and visual arts.
In 2008-2009, Nestan Nijaradze coordinated the big project on Georgia by MAGNUM Agency, Georgian Spring, organizing the exhibition and the book as a result of the project, with Antoine d’Agata, Alex Majoli, Paolo Pellegrin, Martine Franck, Martin Parr..(more details about N.Nijaradze at the bottom).
Klavdij SLUBAN, an internationally renowned photographer, born in Paris in 1963, develops a rigorous and coherent body of work, nourished by literature, never inspired by immediate and sensational current affairs, making him one of the most interesting photographers of his generation. The Balkans, the Black Sea, the Baltic Sea, the Caribbean, Central America, Russia, China and the Antarctic (first artistic mission in the Kerguelen islands) can be read as many successive steps of an in-depth study of a patient proximity to the encountered real. K.Sluban’s cycles have been exhibited in major museums, institutions, galleries…Winner of several major photo prizes, he has published numerous books.
Masterclass Klavdij Sluban photo B.Pucelj
Since 1995, Sluban has been photographing teenagers in jails. In each prison he organizes workshops with the young offenders to share his passion.
K.Sluban is being represented by several international galleries, among which Gallery KLUSER in Munich (with Andy Warhol, Joseph Beuys, Boltanski…), AURA Gallery in Beijing (with Daido Moriyama, Araki…). K.Sluban is invited for workshops, masterclasses and conferences throughout the world (Harvard University, Biblioteca Mario de Andrade of São Paulo, Metropolitan Museum of Photography, Tokyo, Singapore Museum of Modern Art, Bibliothèque Nationale de France…) . Since 2003, he has been running workshops during the Rencontres d’Arles each summer. (more details about K.Sluban at the bottom).
Why the MASTERKLASS is unique
This Masterklass is outstanding due to its original way of following the evolution and progression of each participant.
The group meeting once every three months gives the opportunity to share ideas, points of view, give and receive constructive criticism.
The personal meetings consist of meeting both Nestan and Klavdij, one after the other. This is the time to consider the evolution of one’s own work and see the way to keep on.
By bringing material that might not be used for the final project, this will be a way to get rid of existing doubts. These personal meetings are scheduled according to a very rigourous timing and calendar. The aim is to consider the many various possibilities to put one’s feelings into shape and keep the most appropriate one.
Other peculiarity, the last group meeting will be displayed on three days: Friday, Saturday, Sunday. During the first two days, the final projects will be shown and appreciated within the group. On Sunday, an important person of the world of photography is being specially invited in order to review each participant’s project.
This guest, either a curator, a director of a museum, gallery or some other institution, or editor…will be chosen according to her or his capacity to be senstive and appreciate the personal, artistic, author approach of creative photography.
Last peculiarity, a series of the most achieved works will be selected and presented at the Tbilisi Photo Festival. Participants wishing to join the Festival are most welcome.
Festival Facebook page
The Masterklass focuses on the most appropriate way to find a theme to work on throughout the year. This means the theme will have to take into account various parameters ranging from personal desires, obsessions, points of interest… to the actual possibility to put all of these parameters into shape.
Another possibility will be to keep on working on a project already started previously.
The group meetings will be the time to show the development od each project. These group meetings will be a time where each participant gives a clear statement of the way the project develops.
Individual meetings will be the time of questions, doubts and thinking of the way to give shape to a project. This will be a time where we ask questions we are asking ourselves when alone, in the loneliness of conceiving a project, the way to give it shape, editing.
It might happen that evidence comes out after several individual meetings.
The art of EDITING: editing is the keystone when building a coherent series. Editing gives clues about the way to keep on working on one’s project. Without editing, no appropriate distance with one’s photos.
Show me your photos and I will tell you who you are.
• Editing is the moment where one’s own personal photographic writing takes shape.
An educated eye is necessary to go beyond oneself and avoid repeating what has already been done.
Many and various references will be given during Le Masterklass. In photography, classic as contemporary photographers, but also in different areas of visual arts, not to speak of literature.
• All of this will help to find which genre or field of photography is the most appropriate according to the chosen theme.
• Knowing one’s own work helps to focus on whom we wish it to be shown: magazine, gallery, editor…
• take into account the most appropriate way to present one’s work:
For an exibition:
• choose the right paper
• size of the prints
• decide of a rhythm, order, sequence of the photos. Be aware of the strong ones. The ones that create a link between two chapters…
• the way to mount an exhibition in a given space.
For a publication:
• size of the book
• lay out
• title, text
• editor or artist book.
An exhibition, a book or a slideshow induce totally different ways of considering o series of photos.
The way to present one’s own work and give it the maximum potential will also be one of the keystones of LE MASTERKLASS.
How to prepare for a prize, a scholarship, a porfolio review, a gallery, a magazine, a festival with a specific theme…all of these aspects will be considered.
Who can participate:
Open to anyone who has a passion for photography
Nestan and Klavdij believe that each person has the capacity to build his/her
own visual language when passion for the image and the right guidance co-exist.
That is to say:
– professional photographers and artists who wish to further develop their style, concept, technique or to break away from it, to deepen specific projects from press and commercial work to documentary, personal or artistic expression.
– students – preparation of portfolio for entrance into art institutes and schools, to develop further their portfolios for job opportunities, to become independent photographers/artists
– amateurs who wish to develop their photographic eye, to learn about photography and to cultivate their knowledge of art and photography, who may be even considering a freelance career as a photographer or artist or even a career change
French, English, Russian, without forgetting Georgian, Slovenian…
Where does the workshop take place
In the heart of Paris, in an artist’s loft, spacious and bright, with natural light, equipped with all technology necessary to work within the best technical conditions.
A huge table will be our main tool to do the editing in vivo.
Located rue du Faubourg Poissonnière, in the 9th arrondissement of Paris, next to these métro stations: Poissonnière, Bonne Nouvelle, Cadet (lines 7, 8 & 9).
A huge range of possibilities for accomodation. Feel free to ask for advice.
How to participate
To join the Masterklass, send an email to email@example.com
answer will be given in the language of demand
or if you wish, you can call: Karen: +33 6 14 52 38 94.
Karen will know how to answer all of your questions.
A REGISTRATION FORM to be filled in will be sent to you on request.
Cost of LE MASTERKLASS, subscription, miscellaneous informations
2750,00€ for the year, from December 2015 to November 2016.
Including 4 group meetings and individual meetings according to each participant’s evolution, progression, need…
How to pay: see with LE MASTERCLASS organization.
How to register: by sending a filled in registration form and a first payment will make you part of LE MASTERCLASS group.
The number of participants is limited to 15. (based on a sytem: first come first served)
We wish to inform you that due to the numerous workshops, conferences, portfolio reviewings…Nestan and Klavdij meet a lot of photographers. Which is a pleasure. Some of them register in advance for their further MASTERKLASS to come. Therefore the limit of 15 participants will be strictly respected.
The organization of LE MASTERKLASS cannot be held for responsible in case of any loss, damage, deterioration… of any participants’ belongings or equipment and does not cover any damage that could occur during the time of LE MASTERKLASS. Each participant has to subscribe a personal insurance, covering any eventual damage of any kind.
In case of cancellation, the participant’s deposit will be given back, with a deduction of 350,00€ for admistrative expenses. For cancellations made less than 60 days in advance, no reimbursment will be made, except in case of force majeure.
1st group meeting : Saturday12 & Sunday13 December 2015
2nd group meeting : Saturday 09 & Sunday 10 April 2016
3rd group meeting e: Saturday 02 & Sunday 03 July 2016
4th group meeting : Friday 04, Saturday 05 & Sunday 06 November 2016
The first 3 week-ends will be run similarily:
9am-12.30 – 2pm-8pm
• lunch taken together.
One or two assistants will be constantly present to help solve all kinds of technical, practcical, or any other demand. Young photographers or advanced students, they master all the modern techniques.
•Coffee, tea, fresh juices, snacks…fruit, are at the disposal of the participants throughout the MASTERKLASS.
Balkanic and Caucasus specialties also available…
For the first group meeting, each participant comes with one or several series of PRINTED photos, small size, so that we can display them on the table.
Bring between 40 and 60 prints.
If you have a few nicely printed photos to show of a larger size (exhibition print quality) feel free to show them.
• bring those of your former productions, publication, book, magazine, artist book, scrapbook, you think will help to introduce you as a photographer in quest of one’s own photographic language.
•notebook, recorder, computer…anything you need to keep all of the many references given and suggested all along LE MASTERCLASS.
Individual meetings will be strictly schedulded in advance, from one time to another.
Physical encounters will be prevelieged. When not possible, SKYPE will be our communication tool.
When material is well prepared in advance, skype is a very convenient and efficient way to look at photos and edit.
All technical advices to use skype, wetransfer…will be given at the right moment.
Individual meetings consist of meeting both Nestan and Klavdij.
One after the other.
Friday 4 and Saturday November 5, 2016, each participant shows the final result of a year’s creation: book, series of high quality prints, slideshow, installation…)
Sunday November 6, 2016, A SPECIAL GUEST comes to look at each participant’s work. This session will be done in group. Crticism will be of great help to everybody around the table.
As a conclusion to these 12 months spent together, a PARTY will be organized on SUNDAY evening. SURPRISE, SURPRISE…
Nestan NIJARADZE, is co-founder and director of the TBILISI PHOTO FESTIVAL, curator of numerous international exhibitions and promotes photographers with a personal photographic style from the Caucasus area.
The TPF was created in 2010 in partnership with the Rencontres d’Arles. It collabarotes with several international festivals as well as with agencies such as MAGNUM or NOOR.
Nestan Nijaradze is a portfolio-reviews expert in the most prestigious festivals, writes regularily essays and articles on photography in various specialized magazines and has been producing thematic broadcasts on visual arts on the cultural channel of the Georgian National Television: ART EXPRESS, 24 HEURES, WEEK-END, CAMERA OBSCURA, EUROPE MAGAZINE…
IN 2008-2009, N. Nijaradze coordianted the big project of Magnum on Georgia, Georgian Spring, organizing both the exhebition and the publication of the book, with ANTOINE D’AGATA, PAOLO PELLEGRIN, MARTINE FRANCK, ALEX MAJOLI, MARTIN PARR…
After graduating from the Tbilisi University, in Visual Arts, N.Nijaradze got a Masters in Paris, at the University of Paris VII, on photography and cinema, with a memoir on The Poetic Aspect of Otar Iosseliani’s Cinema.
Actively commited in the world of visual arts, N.Nijaradze has ben director of the TBILISI HOUSE OF PHOTOGRAPHY between 2007 and 2015, art director of PHOTO magazine and has initiated the first permanent collection of Georgian photography, which has been expanding since 2007.
Klavdij Sluban & Nestan Nijaradze. 2015
Currator of many major exhibitions, Nestan Nijaradze has introduced such photographers as Robert Capa, Stanley Greene, Guiorgui Pinkhassov, Vanessa Winship…and many others in Georgia, at the Fine Art Museum, the National Museum of Goergia, galleries, as well as alternative spaces. At the same time, Nestan promotes photographers from the Caucasus region abroad: Georgian Photography, ((Natela Grigalshvili, Newsha Tavakolian, Guram Tsibakhashvili, Shalva Alkhanaidze…) in the frame of La Nuit de l’Année des Rencontres d’Arles, the Kiev Month of Photography in Ukraine, in Vilnius (Lithuania), in Moscow…
Member of jurys such as FIPA, Nestan nominates young photographers for the WORLD PRESS PHOTO, and regularily runs workshops and masterclasses .
Klavdij SLUBAN, winner of the European Publishers Award for Photography 2009, of the Leica Prize (2004) and of the Niépce Prize (2000), main French prize in photography, Klavdij Sluban is a French photographer of Slovenian origin born in Paris in 1963.
He develops a rigorous and coherent body of work, nourished by literature, never inspired by immediate and sensational current affairs, making him one of the most interesting photographers of his generation. The Balkans, the Black Sea, the Baltic Sea, the Caribbean, Central America, Russia, China and the Antarctic (first artistic mission in the Kerguelen islands) can be read as many successive steps of an in-depth study of a patient proximity to the encountered real. His images have been shown in such leading institutions as the Metropolitan Museum of Photography of Tokyo, the Maison Européenne de la Photographie in Paris, the Rencontres d’Arles, the Museum of Photography in Helsinki, the Fine Arts Museum in Canton, the Musée Beaubourg, the Museum of Texas Tech University…
His many books include East to East (published simultaneously by Actes Sud, Dewi Lewis, Petliti, Braus, Apeiron & Lunwerg with a text by Erri de Luca), Entre Parenthèses, (Photo Poche, Actes Sud), Transverses, (Maison Européenne de la Photographie) and Balkans -Transit, with a text by François Maspero (Seuil).
Klavdij Sluban during a workshop
Since 1995, Sluban has been photographing teenagers in jails. In each prison he organizes workshops with the young offenders to share his passion.
First originated in France, in the prison of Fleury-Mérogis with support of Henri Cartier-Bresson during 7 years, as well as Marc Riboud and William Klein punctually. This commitment was pursued in the disciplinary camps of Eastern Europe –Serbia, Slovenia, Ukraine, Georgia, Moldavia, Latvia – and in the disciplinary centres of Moscow and St Petersburg as well as in Ireland. From 2007 to 2012, Sluban has been working in Central America with imprisoned youngsters belonging to maras (gangs) in Guatemala and Salvador. In 2015, he started photogrphing imprisoned teeangers in Brazil.
In 2013, the musée Niépce showed a retrospective of K.Sluban’s work, After Darkness, 1995-2012.
In 2015/16, he was awarded the Villa Kujoyama Residence in Kyoto, Japan. K.Sluban is member of national and international jurys, such as prix Niépce, prix de la Jeune Photographie de Niort, prix Leica, All About Photo…
See the Official website
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AJqzpOdZjZQ (H. Cartier Bresson & K. Sluban)
http://www.rfi.fr/emission/20150830-klavdij-sluban (Intellectuels d’Europe)
Participants’ works from workshops, masterclasses lead by Nestan / Klavdij
Site officiel de Pia Elizondo
Site officiel de Erika Vancouver
Slideshow by Emile Rubino