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Ibali & George Mason University

At the end of last year, we ran a successful pilot program of our Ibali Photo Collective; a photography workshop program that teaches photography to kids from underprivileged areas of Cape Town. While we’re gearing up to roll this out into a long-term, ongoing program, we will be participating in some one-day projects with our students. This Monday was one of those projects. In collaboration with Edu Africa, Dave Fisher organised an educational photography-themed day for our Ibali kids and a group of students from George Mason University. – By Alberto Giammattei

On a sunny Monday, four of our Ibali students met four students from the George Mason University for a photography workshop around Cape Town. Two great photographers, Dave Fisher and Nicky Newman, were our guides and mentors for the day.

After a brief introduction and the preparation of our cameras, we visited the After Life exhibition at the Iziko South African Museum, a monument to nature by Kali van Der Merwe. This incredible exhibition “opens an aperture to the mysteries of life through the lens of death” and was an excellent source of inspiration for our young photographers. The possibility to interact directly with the artworks enhanced the creativity and introduced a ludic aspect to the visit.

Later, we went out to enjoy the wonderful weather and take some pictures in the open air. Walking around the parliament, we had the chance to reflect on the history behind the statues present in the area. In front of the monument to Louis Botha, Americans and South Africans exchanged ideas and experiences related to racism and segregation. Once again, photography has demonstrated to be a way to bring people together and encourage reflection.

The Company’s Garden offered a beautiful variety of plants and animals to our photographers: funny squirrels running in the green vegetation grabbed our attention and made us laugh while trying to photograph them.

After a quick lunch together at the Garden, we moved to the Waterfront to observe the behaviour of locals and tourists in the Nobel Square. Here, four Nobel Peace Prize Laureates are celebrated: Nkosi Albert Luthuli, Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu, former State President F.W. de Klerk and former President Nelson Mandela. It is interesting to observe the approach that different people have with these pillars of the South African history and, of course, to capture their interactions with the four statues with a camera.

Finally, we went to Seapoint for some landscape photography in front of the ocean. There we had the last opportunity to talk and say goodbye to our new friends from the US.

A special thank to Nicky Newman for devoting her time to the Ibali project and to Professor LaNitra Berger for giving us the opportunity to open our horizons meeting her group from the George Mason University.

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