Twelve emerging talents selected for first Masterclass East Africa

The World Press Photo Foundation announced the names of the 12 young photographers who will participate in the World Press Photo Foundation Masterclass East Africa.

The masterclass aims to support the most promising young visual journalists from the region in their professional development, and will take place in Nairobi, Kenya, from 28 November to 2 December.

The Masterclass East Africa is the second in the World Press Photo Foundation’s series of satellite masterclasses, based on the formula of the annual Joop Swart Masterclass for the world’s most talented upcoming visual journalists. The first satellite event was the Masterclass Latin America, which took place in Mexico in December of last year.

Three jury members selected the 12 participants from 110 submitted portfolios. The selection committee consisted of: Bisi Silva, independent curator, founder and director of the Centre for Contemporary Art in Lagos, Carl de Souza, AFP Chief Photographer East Africa, and John Fleetwood, director of Photo and former head of the Market Photo Workshop in Johannesburg.

The following 12 photographers—7 women and 5 men of 8 different nationalities—are: 

  • Biko Wesa, Kenya
  • Brian Otieno, Kenya
  • Cynthia Matonhodze, Zimbabwe
  • Emma Nzioka, Kenya
  • Esther Mbabazi, Uganda
  • Hilina Abebe, Ethiopia
  • Landry Nshimiye, Burundi
  • Maheder Haileselassie, Ethiopia
  • Miora Rajaonary, Madagascar
  • Elsadig Mohamed, Sudan
  • Thoko Chikondi, Malawi
  • Zinyange Auntony, Zimbabwe

The two runners up are:

  • Tafadza Ufumeli, Zimbabwe
  • Ray Ochieng, Kenya

Bisi Silva, independent curator, founder and director of the Centre for Contemporary Art in Lagos reflected on the entries:

“I was excited to see such diversity of photographic practice across the region exploring myriad issues that highlight and affect our daily lives. It was reassuring to see that there was a good gender balance allowing a nice mix of participants. I think it is going to be an extremely vibrant masterclass that engages the diversity of cultures and experiences from across East Africa.”

Carl de Souza, AFP Chief Photographer East Africa added:

“We saw a variety of technical abilities, but what I was really looking for at the end of the day was whether I felt the photographer really wanted to tell a story rather than just put together a series of images. There's a big difference and that is the first step that all aspiring documentary photographers need to really confront early on with their work.”

The World Press Photo Foundation is also pleased to welcome the following masters:

  • Andrew Esiebo, Nigeria
  • Neo Ntsoma, South Africa
  • Thomas Mukoya, Kenya
  • Julien Jourdes, France
  • Jodi Bieber, South Africa

The masters were chosen to meet the learning needs and wishes of the selected participants. They will share their expertise and provide individual advice to all participants. The masterclass curriculum is structured around photo essays based on a central theme, “Community”, that participants are required to work on in preparation for the masterclass. The masterclass week also includes lectures and individual instruction with all masters.

About the World Press Photo Foundation education programs
The World Press Photo Foundation is committed to education. The future of visual journalism depends on the dedication of new talent. From the annual Joop Swart Masterclass to local workshops, from grants to speaking events, we aim to educate, enable, and connect visual storytellers. For more information on the education programs, please see:

Posted November 7 2016

About The World Press Photo Foundation

We are a global platform connecting professionals and audiences through trustworthy visual journalism and storytelling. Founded in 1955 when a group of Dutch photographers organized a contest to share their work with an international audience, the competition has grown into the world’s most prestigious photography award and our mission has expanded. We encourage diverse accounts of the world that present stories with different perspectives. We exhibit those stories to a worldwide audience, educate the profession and the public on their making, and encourage debate on their meaning.

The World Press Photo Foundation is an independent, nonprofit organization, based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. We receive support from the Dutch Postcode Lottery and are sponsored worldwide by Canon.