An evening with Jodi Bieber
Fresh from a year of international exhibitions and workshops after having won the coveted World Press Photo Award in 2011 for her work on Bibi Aisha in Afghanistan, Jodi Bieber will talk candidly about the trials and tribulations involved in shooting award-winning photography.
The festival is proud to offer this rare opportunity to hear Jodi Bieber speak about the project that made her name around the world. Bieber will discuss her whirlwind year since winning the World Press Photo Award and about her books Between Dogs & Wolves (2006) and Soweto (2010).
Bieber became the centre of international attention recently, winning what is arguably photography's top prize, the World Press Photo with her haunting story about Bibi Aisha in Afghanistan, which featured on the cover of Time magazine. Bibi was 18 and from the southern Afghan province of Oruzgan. In 2009 she fled her husband's house, complaining of beatings and abuse. She escaped to the only place she could go, back to her family home. It was here that the Taliban arrived one night and demanded that the girl be handed over to face justice. She was taken away to a mountain clearing, where she was held down by her brother-in-law, while her husband first sliced off her ears and then cut off her nose.
Photographing Aisha for the Cover of TIME
Jodi Bieber will speak about her encounter with Bibi Aisha and the impact that her work has had as a result. She will also discuss her early life and experiences growing up in South Africa and how these have shaped her as a photographer.
I was born, as were my parents, in South Africa and lived there most of my life. When Hector Peterson was killed in the Soweto uprising in 1976, I was ten years old. Living in a middle-class suburb, I didn’t have much political understanding of what was really going on in our country. It was only by chance and great fortune that I found photography. With its discovery I found a vehicle to explore my country and the people I knew so little about.
I was selected as a trainee at The Star newspaper. This was in September 1993, during the run-up to the first democratic elections in 1994 – an important and historic time –intense, exciting, volatile, and traumatic. It pulled me deep into things I had been protected from throughout my youth. The coming of democracy brought jubilation but I was also to experience several deaths during that period. Ken Oosterbroek, former chief photographer at The Star and the man who gave me my first break, was killed, as was Abdul Shariff. Kevin Carter and Gary Bernard were to follow. Both took their own lives. All (members and associates of the Bang Bang Club) were colleagues of mine...
Jodi Bieber is delivering a four-day masterclass in London:
Finding your Photographic Voice
7 to 10 June
Jodi Bieber is an award-winning South African photographer. Between 1994 and 2004 she concentrated her attention on a personal project focused on the country of her birth, photographing youth living on the fringes of South African society. The resulting book Between Dogs and Wolves – Growing up with South Africa (Dewi Lewis), was published and released in five countries in 2006, followed by her next book Soweto (Jacana Media), which was first published in 2010.
In 2011 she won the World Press Photo with her haunting story about Bibi Aisha in Afghanistan which featured on the cover of Time magazine.
Bieber was a finalist in South Africa’s Women in the Media Awards 2011. She was also the winner of the Prix de le l'Union Europeene at the Recontres de Bamako Biennale Africaine de la Photographie, November 2009. She has won 10 World Press awards, a 1st Place in Picture of the Year International 2009 and in 2011 won the premier World Press Photo Award. Bieber has taught workshops in Finland, Nepal, Italy and Austria and been a guest lecturer at the Market Photography Workshop (JHB), London College of Communication, Westminster University, ICP school of Photojournalism (NY) and at Photo Espana. She was a jury member on World Press Awards 2008 and taught on The Joop Swart Masterclass in Holland in 2010.
Bieber will have a mid-career retrospective at the Stadhuis, Ulm, Germany in July 2012.
Bieber was recently bestowed with the honour of being named "Brand Ambassador" for the province of Gauteng in South Africa.
JODI BIEBER'S BOOKS:
Images © Jodi Bieber