©Ziyah Gafic/VII
©Tomas van Houtryve
©Ziyah Gafic/VII
©Ashley Gilbertson/VII

The VII Foundation

The VII Foundation’s mission is to transform visual journalism by empowering new voices and creating stories that advocate change. In a world where beliefs and actions are increasingly out-of-sync with facts and realities, transforming visual journalism is an urgent task.


The VII Foundation trains and equips emerging visual journalists from communities underrepresented in the media. These practitioners have a front-seat perspective on urgent challenges that concern us all. The VII Foundation teaches essential skills and strategies to ensure the truth is documented and made available to a global audience seeking to make decisions and choices based on facts, not hearsay.  

Our training is tuition-free and conducted by leading professional journalists who have worked for decades on the frontlines of some of our societies’ most complex and difficult challenges. In this era of an underfunded, dying global media enterprise, our trainees help ensure the global conversation continues and is fuelled by first-person reporting vs. unsourced, uncredited rumors and factual manipulation. In addition to empowering over 1,200 new voices in journalism from more than 100 countries, we host public conversations and critical debates that ask tough questions about the context, purpose, and impact of images. We create large-scale and long-term documentary projects, exhibitions, and films that reveal complex realities; advocate for change; and serve as resources for policymakers, the public, and journalists worldwide. 

The VII Foundation consists of VII Photo, acquired in 2023, along with three educational initiatives: VII Academy, VII Community, and VII Insider.


MONUMENTAL: The Dome of the Rock by Ziyah Gafić and Notre-Dame de Paris by Tomas van Houtryve fosters discussions on faith, national identity, power politics, social cohesion, colonization, division, and political violence through the symbolism of two monumental religious buildings: The Dome of the Rock, in Jerusalem, and Notre-Dame de Paris.



VII Photo contributing photographers Philip Blenkinsop, Eric Bouvet, Ashley Gilbertson, Ed Kashi, Ilvy Njiokiktjien, Daniel Schwartz, and Danny Wilcox Frazier will run a series of three-day and half-day workshops at The VII Foundation’s Alexandra Boulat Campus in the heart of Arles. All workshops include a private group session with James Nachtwey.


Summer Workshops

Join us in Arles for a rare rendezvous with James Nachtwey, one of the most celebrated photojournalists of our time. During this open conversation and Q&A, James will showcase a collection of seminal photographs from his illustrious career. He will discuss his approach to assignments, using a well-known body of work as a case study, and answer your questions. 


James Nachtwey Talk



A book, exhibition, education, and advocacy project. In this signature collection, world-renown journalists and authors take us into societies that have suffered searing conflict—and survived. Funded by the Gross Family Foundation.
The VII Foundation, Generation Human Rights, and Photoville's initiative, the Millennium Villages Project (MVP) Interactive Classroom Program and Mobile Exhibit Bus Tour was a global human rights learning project. MVP taught 8th-12th grade students about sustainable development and solutions to extreme poverty, drawing connections between local realities and those abroad.
Dedicated to advancing women's presence in the documentation of the natural world, Nature Through Her Eyes' mission is to provide access and opportunity through mentoring, masterclasses, and networking during a bi-annual four-day festival.
Dispatches in Exile provides migrants in Bosnia and Herzegovina with basic media training to tell their own stories in partnership with The International Organization for Migration (IOM).
Yves Saint Laurent by Alexandra and Pierre Boulat is an extensive body of photographic work capturing the most significant moments throughout French fashion and costume designer Yves Saint Laurent’s career.
Since 2004 visual artist Ismar Čirkinagić has been gathering, preserving, and identifying plants from the sites of mass graves across Bosnia-Herzegovina and photographing the landscapes in which they were found.