Up Close: Photography as a Way of Seeing

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 2022, 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 and an additional session. 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 2023, we have designed an interesting programme of workshops that will address, among other things, the necessity of visual literacy in contemporary society, reflections on the possibility of sustainable action in the field of photography and the ways of its presentation, and therefore also the methodologies of gallery practice.

Together with the expert team, the participants will reflect on photography as a visual narrative and on photography in relation to issues of gender, identity and social roles. In the practical part of the workshops they will learn about the basic principles of visual storytelling and train in various photographic genres and techniques.

The programme will be thematically linked to the Jakopič Gallery's gallery exhibitions in 2023; Ripples, Susan Meiselas: Mediations and Slovenian Women Artists - Photographers 1850-1950.

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

Dates and workshop content in 2023:

20.-21. 1. 2023: Thinking Eye: The necessity of visual literacy in the 21. century: The workshop will offer opportunities for conscious looking in the photographic process and to reflect on the meaningfulness and significance of one's own photographic process. This fundamental workshop will engage participants in visual literacy training, while sharpening a critical, not just photographic, view of what is happening around us.

24.-25. 3. 2023: Photography presentations: alternative aproaches: Photography only speaks to the viewer when it has experienced one of its possible presentations, especially in the form of an exhibition. But: do large formats really mean a great artist? In this workshop we will reflect on how does the form underpin the content and does photography really need a prestigious material form to communicate its message?

26.-27. 5. 2023: Photography and nature: sustainable consideration: In the context of the theme of water, which determines the Ripples exhibition, our third workshop, which will be held partly outdoors, will reflect on the role of photography in sustainable communication and visualisation of environmental issues, the importance of natural resources and human interdependence with nature. 

6.-7. 10. 2023: Photography as visual storytelling: Using the work of the renowned photographer Susan Meiselas as an example, we will reflect on photography as a process of empowerment and get acquainted with different techniques of visual storytelling (photojournalism, documentary projects, etc.). Among other things, we will look at the role of the photographer as an "outsider" or as an "insider", giving voice to the subject, and reflect on the roles of the photographer and of the audience.

1.-2. 12. 2023: Photography and the questions of gender, identity and social role: Using the example of the exhibition on Slovenian women artists in the period 1850-1950, we will reflect on the questions of gender, identity and social roles, all in the case of women photographers and artists, as well as in the case of portrait as a photographic genre.

Bonus summer Saturday afternoonWorkflow optimisation is one of the most important technical aspects of photography. This workshop will provide a practical insight into the methods used by a photographer to successfully complete a photographic project.

© 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, designer; 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 (18:00-21:00) and Saturdays (9:00-18:00); 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.

The price for all 5 workshops is €625 per person. If you pay immediately for the full-year programme, you will receive a 10% discount (€560 / person). The Friends of the Jakopič Gallery can claim a 15% discount on the regular price of the programme (€625 / person).

It is also possible to attend only the first workshop, which will be open to a wider range of participants, for a price of €125/person. For those who, after this first experience, will  decide to enrol in the year-long course, the payment options are as follows:
- get a 10% discount for a one-off payment for the remaining 4 workshops (€450 per person) or
- pay in 10-month instalments of €50; in the case of instalment payment, participants commit at enrolment to participate in and pay for the entire programme.

Friday's lectures will be open to the general public.
Admission: € 3 / free for the Friends of Jakopič Gallery

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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