In 2020, the Photojournalism Department from the Danish School of Media and Journalism selected Solmaz Daryani (Iran) and Sabry Khaled (Egypt) to receive scholarships fully funded by the VII Foundation and the VII Academy to study at their Photo I program for the Spring 2020 semester. Solmaz Daryani and Sabry Khaled were selected among more than 60 applicants.
Solmaz Daryani receives the The Alexandra Boulat Grant in remembrance of the late, prize winning French photographer, who was a member and co-founder of VII Photo Agency. Before getting into Photography, Solmaz graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in computer science and worked at an international telecommunication company. She started taking most of her pictures in the town or villages around the port where her grandparents were living near Lake Urmia, which was one of the biggest salt lakes in the world. Solmaz didn’t attend any international workshops or photography courses due to visa issues and financial restraints, and is a self taught photographer. In 2015, she received the IdeasTap and Magnum Photos Grant and in 2016, she received the Magnum Foundation’s Photography in Collaboration: On Religion Grant.
Sabry Khaled receives The Shahidul Alam Grant in honor of the great importance Shahidul Alam has for the development of independent photojournalism in the World. When the 2011 revolution hit the streets of Egypt, Sabry dropped his dentistry career and picked up his camera again. With no education other than self-learning, trial and error, photobooks and Youtube, he has been working for local and international press as a staff photojournalist and stringer. In his work, he focuses on social and personal issues, and how Egyptian society is rapidly changing. Sabry has curated an exhibition at Cairo Photo Week and is a regular teacher at Photopia, a Cairo-based photography school.
In 2019, the Photojournalism Department from the Danish School of Media and Journalism selected Tripty Tamang Pakhrin (Nepal) and Khashayar Javanmardi (Iran) to receive scholarships fully funded by the VII Academy to study at their Photo I program for the Fall semester. Tripty Tamang Pakhrin and Khashayar Javanmardi were selected among more than 20 applicants.
Tripty Tamang Pakhrin
Tripty Tamang Pakhrin received the The Alexandra Boulat Grant in remembrance of the late, prize winning French photographer, who was a member and co-founder of VII Photo Agency. Tripty (b. 1995) is based in Kathmandu, Nepal. She is a graduate of the School of Management, Kathmandu University. From documenting young Chinese gamers in internet cafes to exploring Siem Reap’s gay bar scene, her work focuses on themes related to youth culture, space, repetition and memory. In 2018, she received the Fritt Ord Foundation’s Student Grant. She is currently associated with photo.circle, a photography platform in Nepal and Photo Kathmandu and an international photo biennale that takes place in Kathmandu.
“As a learning photographer, I think we often only focus on photos, and overlook the importance of other elements in telling a story such as text and design. [The] Magazine Workshop helped me work on those aspects and get new skills that are very useful in any photographic work. Also, the process of creating a physical thing with our photo stories was exciting and a great learning opportunity.”
View the magazine spread Tripty made for on of her classes, “The Magazine Workshop,” below:
The video Tripty made with two of her classmates can be seen here
“I have learned a lot here in DMJX. I got the opportunity to be in a formal educational setting with peers from different cultures and backgrounds. It’s great to have different views in the classroom for nuanced discussions. The meeting of varied opinions and ideas make the learning here richer. I have also had the chance to meet many photographers, see their works and learn from them. My time here has raised more questions, challenged and encouraged me to explore different trajectories in photography and it has driven me to be more thoughtful about the stories I chose to tell. I will be joining the Photo Kathmandu team again back in Nepal and my experience in Denmark will surely influence my work now. It has inspired me to go back home and work on stories in Nepal. I also feel like I can share my learning with other fellow photographers in Nepal like the alumni did in my case.”
Khashayar Javanmardi received The Shahidul Alam Grant in honour of the great importance Shahidul Alam has for the development of independent photojournalism in the World. Khashayar Javanmardi (b.1991) is an Iranian documentary photographer and artist whose work has focused on social issues, migration and the environment. Javanmardi has been nominated for Joop Swart Master Class, the HPA Performance Award for Caspian Sea project and the Iranian Image of the Year for three times in a row. His work has been published in The New York Times, Newsweek and most Iranian print media.
“My focus is on a long term ongoing project about [the] Caspian Sea…as my final project. Honestly, [DMJX] is my greatest experience till now. I had never been to Europe before. Studying in a great school made me face everything more seriously and professionally. I can say that this course helped me to think narrower and more concentrated on different stories…After going back home, I’d like to work more seriously, more concentrated with a full conscious about my personal approaches. I’m not interested in news and reportages anymore but really interested in deep stories with creative approaches.”
View some of the images Khashayar has produced during his time at DMJX: