Up Close: Photography as a Way of Seeing

Please be informed that due to the challenge that the January date poses for some participants and mentors, we are postponing the start of the Up Close workshops from January 2024 to 22 and 23 March 2024. A few places are still available, and applications are now open until 20 March 2024.

The Jakopič Gallery is one of the central exhibition venues of the Museum and Galleries of Ljubljana (MGML). Its orientation includes promoting a wider social understanding of photography as one of the most expressive artistic, communicative and creative media.

Once again, in 2024, you are kindly invited to join our successful study group Up Close: Photography as a Way of Seeing. The year-long informal course accommodates participants, whose view of the world includes the idea of photography. It will encourage them to face, up close and personal, as sensitive individuals, the missions that can be realised through photography. The course introduces various approaches to photography and its broad communicative value, based on the training of the photographer's eye and personality, rather than the technical perfection of their equipment.

Our strong expert team leads the participants through the process which includes five two-day workshops. A variety of themes are open in a dynamic dialogue between theory and practice. The participants are encouraged to find their original individual expression and engage in critical thinking about diverse narratives, artistic photographic genres and the ways of presenting photographic work. The programme offers knowledge, creative growth and meetings with internationally acclaimed photographers.

© Metod Blejec

© Metod Blejec

For 2024, we have once again designed an exciting and varied programme. In the Up Close workshops, led by a team of top experts, you will learn about visual literacy in contemporary society, relationships in the production, distribution and perception of photography, and what collaborative photography is, among other things. In the practical part of the workshops, you will learn the basic principles of visual storytelling and practice different photographic genres and techniques.

The programme will be thematically linked to the Jakopič Gallery's gallery exhibitions in 2024; Klavdij Sluban: Elswhere Here; Documenti_ng.

We will meet:
22 and 23 March 2024
31 May and 1 June 2024
27 and 28 September 2024
29 and 30 November 2024
*additional date to be agreed with participants

Workshop content in 2024:

Critical thinking as a basis for visual literacy
In this first session, we will explore the depth of individual agency in the context of community through presentations by all five mentors, and examine how the art of photographic expression connects us. The focus will be on the importance of critical thinking in the interpretation and communication of photographic images, and on the development of visual literacy for the thoughtful translation of values, emotions and ideas into the photographic process.

Dimensions; Space, Form and Dimension in Photography
The first part of the workshop will be an inspiring exchange of creative experiences with photographer Klavdij Sluban on the occasion of his exhibition Elswhere Here. Through photography and other multimedia tools we will shake up our ways of perceiving the dimensions of space and reflect on the relationship of these tools to other dimensions.

Photography and the Archetype
The visual perception of the world is inextricably linked to what we look at, but also fundamentally dependent on the symbols and patterns embedded in our collective unconscious. How do photography and other contemporary visual technologies convey their meanings and co-shape our image of ourselves and the world?

Power relations; Analysis of relations in the production, distribution and perception of photography
In the age of social media and instant exchange, photography plays a key role in influencing public opinion, raising awareness and promoting cultural and social change. Therefore, this workshop will focus on the awareness of the power dynamics between the photographer, the subject and the viewer, which influence the distribution and interpretation of photographic works in the broadest social context.

Collaborative Photography; The Experience of Co-creation
The workshop will be set up as a space to cultivate inner development through collaborative practice, which not only ennobles the final photographic experience, but also fosters the growth and personal refinement of each participant. Special emphasis will be placed on the creative process, where the group will enrich the final photographic results through dialogue, collaboration and experimentation.

The workshops are suitable for experienced photographers as well as for individuals who are hobbyists or use photography in their work.

© Una Rebić

© Metod Blejec

© Una Rebić

Expert team: Marija Skočir, Ph.D., curator for photography; Matevž Paternoster, photographer working in the intersection of architecture, museum and commercial photography; Saša Kralj, an experienced photojournalist who took a different path and works as an art photographer and a mentor; Metod Blejec, interdisciplinary artist, photographer, designer and educator; and Janja Rebolj, expert in adult education.

Time and place of workshops: Year-long programme comprises of 5 workshops which will take place on Fridays (6-9 PM) and Saturdays (9 AM-6 PM); the date of the bonus technical workshop will be set in agreement with the participants; they will take place in the Jakopič Gallery and other locations of the MGML; in the open air and in studios.

Because photography is more than just pushing a button at the right moment. It is a way of viewing the world!

The price for all 5 workshops is € 650 per person. A 10% discount (€585/person) is available on immediate payment of the full year programme. Friends of the Jakopič Gallery can benefit from a 15% discount on the regular programme price (€552.5/person).

It is also possible to attend just the first workshop, which will be open to a wider range of participants, for a price of € 130 / person. For those who, after this first experience, decide to enrol in the year-long course, the payment options are as follows:
- payment of the remaining 4 workshops in one lump sum at a 10% discount (468 € / person) or
- payment in 10 monthly instalments of € 65; in the case of instalment payment, participants commit to attend and pay for the full year programme at the time of enrolment

For apply (till 20 March 2024) or for further information contact us at prijava@mgml.si

Up Close: Photography as a Way of Seeing, 2017/18 photographic study group
Up Close: Photography as a Way of Seeing, 2018/19 photographic study group
Up Close expert team bios

© Saša Kralj

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