The work of young photographers, ages seven to twelve, from Teotitlan del Valle, Oaxaca, were featured at a festive gallery exhibition that opened last Saturday at the Centro Fotografico Manuel Alvarez Bravo.
They participated in a year-and-a-half photography education project called Nuevas Visiones. Narrando historias visuales en Teotitlán del Valle — New visions: Narrating Visual Histories in Teotitlan del Valle, sponsored by the photography center and various donors.
The students met monthly in their village learning camera techniques, lighting and composition, and were given assignments, mostly just to wander and capture what interested them most.
- Uriel Bazán
- Adriana Vicente Gutierrez
- Montserrat Vicente Gutierrez
- Juan Enrique Mendoza Sánchez
- Beatriz Ruíz Lazo
- Antonio Ruiz Lazo
- Juan Diego Gutierrez Martínez
- Uziel Montaño Ruiz
- Javier Lazo Gutiérrez
The instructor is Eva Alicia Lépiz. Thanks to Javier Lazo Gutierrez, age 25, course teaching assistant, for sending me this list and to Daniel Brena, director of Centro Fotografico Manuel Alvarez Bravo, and Ixchel Castellon, independent cultural manager, for producing this important program
Subjects ranged from brothers, sisters, a bedroom still life, and burros with the sacred mountain Picacho as backdrop.
What amazed me in looking at the work through the eyes of young people was what they chose to focus on. Subjects we might consider mundane became, in their eyes, beautiful, dramatic and meaningful. A lesson for adults to learn.
Family members and friends mostly gathered in the courtyard of the Centro Fotografico Manuel Alvarez Bravo to celebrate the accomplishments.
The center helped with cameras and instruction. The village provided meeting space and local people gave support.
Above left: instructor Eva Alicia Lepiz.
This is an excellent way to bring young people in closer touch with the visual senses around them and give emphasis to a creative form of personal expression.
Other communities whose young people participate in this innovative outreach program include San Bartolo Coyotepec, Rancho Tejas and El Rosario Temextitlan.
Above left is Javier Lazo Gutierrez, age 25, who was the teaching assistant for the course. He is a very accomplished photographer!
Funding is made possible through a generous grant from Homeruns Banamex 2014 and the Fundacion Alfredo Harp Helu de Oaxaca.
[Chiapas Faces and Festivals: Photography Workshop produced by Oaxaca Cultural Navigator, set for end of January 2016]
Don’t miss this exhibition. It’s a fresh view of the world.