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“Foto e Spirito” mentorship program in Milano

This is a mentorship program called in italian "Foto e Spirito" and in English "The soul and the machine".
The goal is to build a small community of people interested in documentary photography and art that aspire to become authors developing their own voice. It is offered in Milano and last about 3 years through three different courses: The game, My voice, What is Beauty.
The program is very focused on each photographer and his own development. It does help with the fear and shame we often feel when we start being "different" from others, it provides a map of knowledge in photography that students can deepen through continue image making and study. I'm obsessed with photobooks and complex narratives and I foster in others the same attitude and an interdisciplinary approach.
The program put emphasis on the necessary risk and courage that are necessary to undertake an artist journey and it follows the participants through the breaking of stereotypes, finding their own themes and ways, the making of their first fanzine, the building of a portfolio, the writing of an artist statement and their first publications.
In every course we invite a guest to give a lecture: we welcomed among others Maria Teresa Salvati on personal branding for photographers, Francesco Merlini on contemporary documentary photography, Laura Liverani on building pinhole cameras and photographic visions.
The program is born in 2016 and it is extremely ambitious.
In 2019 we collaborated with the cultural association CURE to develop a collective project on via Padova in Milano and in 2020 we built a shared photography experience among 80 students that documented the first lockdown due to Covid-19. Community and collaboration among the participants is one of the strength of the program.

Organizer:   Nausicaa Giulia Bianchi

Starting date:   March 1, 2021

Ending date:    October 1, 2021

Location:    Milano

maximun participants:    8

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