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2020 Joop Swart Masterclass: Meet the 24 visual storytellers selected for the 2020 Joop Swart Masterclass
adriana teresa letorney
Jun 30, 2020
We’re pleased to announce the selected participants for the 27th edition of the Joop Swart Masterclass, the World Press Photo Foundation’s prestigious education program. For the first time, due to the current global health crisis, the masterclass will be held online, and 24 participants and eight masters have been selected to make the program more inclusive.

Chosen from the 198 candidates nominated in March, the participants - 11 men and 13 women from 20 different countries - are: 

  • *Alejandra Aragón, Mexico
  • *Cécile Smetana Baudier, Denmark
  • *Elias Williams, United States
  • *Felipe Romero Beltrán, Colombia
  • *Fethi Sahraoui, Algeria
  • *Gulshan Khan, South Africa
  • *Isadora Romero, Ecuador
  • *Johanna Alarcón, Ecuador
  • *Lindokuhle Sobekwa, South Africa
  • *Marcos Zegers, Chile
  • *Mary Gelman, Russia
  • *Mien-Thuy Tran, Vietnam
  • *Miti Ruangkritya, Thailand
  • *Muhammad Salah, Sudan
  • *Nanna Heitmann, Germany
  • *Pat Kane, Canada
  • *Rohit Saha, India
  • *Sagar Chhetri, Nepal
  • *Salma Abedin Prithi, Bangladesh
  • *September Dawn Bottoms, United States
  • *Shwe Wutt Hmon, Myanmar
  • *Sinead Kennedy, Australia
  • *Thembinkosi Hlatshwayo, South Africa
  • *Yufan Lu, China

Esther Ruth Mbabazi, Uganda, was initially selected but is not able to participate.

The Joop Swart Masterclass is an intensive, intimate, and reflective learning experience with the aim to foster conceptual growth and strengthen participants’ visual storytelling skills. The program is tailored to the participants’ specific learning needs. During the masterclass, industry experts mentor the participants, sharing their personal experience and knowledge. By engaging in dialogue with the masters, as well as with their fellow participants, the program builds relationships that will help develop the participants’ work in the future.

A more inclusive masterclass

This year, the selection committee selected 24 participants, compared to 12 participants in previous editions, and there will be eight masters instead of five. “Given the circumstances and the online nature of the program, we want to take this opportunity to make the masterclass more inclusive. The selection committee unanimously came together and pushed for this, and we wholeheartedly agreed with their proposal,” says Juliette Garms, programs and outreach projects manager at World Press Photo.

On the decision of the jury to expand the masterclass to 24 participants, Rahima Gambo, visual artist, photographer, and member of the selection committee, explained, “the masterclass, this year in its digital online format, can be a beacon of hope, leadership, and forward-thinking, offering mentorship and a feeling of togetherness and connection in these troubling times.”

"This is an important opportunity to unite and empower as many visual storytellers worldwide as we can, and together elevate representation in photography,” said Adriana Teresa Letorney, founder and CEO at Visura and member of the selection committee.


2020 Joop Swart Masterclass | World Press Photo

Adriana Teresa Letorney

Founder & CEO of
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