In 2009, the Open Society Documentary Photography Project in partnership with the Open Society Arts & Culture Program launched a new grant program to support photographers from Central Asia, the Caucasus, Afghanistan, Mongolia, and Pakistan. Nine photographers were selected from six different countries—Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, and Pakistan—to document social justice or human rights issues in their home countries.
In addition to awarding project funds, the program provided these photographers with two workshops in Istanbul (in December 2009 and July 2010), audio recording equipment and training, and a six-month mentorship with world-renowned photographers Yuri Kozyrev (NOOR Images) and Antonin Kratochvil (VII Photo Agency).
Hear from these photographers as they talk about their projects and reflect on their experiences, above.
2009–2010 Production Grantees
- Mery Agakhanyan (Armenia): Village Life in Armenia
- Barat Ali Batoor (Afghanistan): The Dancing Boys of Afghanistan
- Hayk Bianjyan (Armenia): Forced Evictions: Property Violations in Armenia
- Rena Effendi (Azerbaijan): Oil Village: Baku, Azerbaijan
- Valeriy Kaliyev (Kazakhstan): Migrant Workers in Kazakhstan
- Justyna Mielnikiewicz (Georgia): Old Rules, New Realities
- Karen Mirzoyan (Armenia): Suicide in Armenia
- Akhtar Soomro (Pakistan): Sheedi Community in Karachi
- Farzana Wahidy (Afghanistan): Life for Women in Afghanistan