From a masterclass to an exhibition by 20 amateur photographers
Masterclasses to encourage amateur photographers to think out of the box: 140 amateur photographers signed up. Fourteen participants were selected in ‘speed-dating’ sessions. In five groups, they worked on sub-themes of the main TILT! theme. The result is something to be proud of: five very special exhibitions of a high standard.
One of the groups comprises Mascha Joustra, Carla Ellens, Jerry van der Weert and Frits van de Reep. As a sub-theme they chose ‘Pauze’, the moment of stillness after tilt. Carla Ellens: “Normally speaking, as an amateur you don’t need to stick to rules. But we do on this project, because everything has to relate to the TILT theme. You are bound to it, and you explore it – through newspaper and internet articles or simply through conversations in the street, anywhere you find associations. You are motivated to look deeper and deeper, to keep experimenting and, by doing that, take yourself to another level. They help you to take the next step, but they don’t hold your hand. You have to discover it for yourself.” Frits van de Reep adds: “You receive input not only from the masters, but also from the group. Within the group we are all open to each other's ideas and we support each other a great deal. We move on to the next step quite quickly and, actually, we were all pretty much on the same wavelength from the outset.”
Although the idea was that all groups would exhibit indoors at Nieuwe Veste, this group manage to convince the organisers that the courtyard at Nieuwe Veste would be a better setting for their work. Carla Ellens: “The designated location was fine, but we had the feeling that we could take it a step further. Outdoors is the best location for us because it reinforces our theme. The big old windows invite you to stop for a moment and look. The objects in the courtyard, such as the little chapel, fit in with the content of our photography. The moment of stillness that follows tilt is a moment that should be presented with impact.”
Masterclass offers inspiration
Mascha Joustra: ‘The extra ingredients such as the museum tours have given us new inspiration to think in new ways about how to exhibit. The first selection day, held in the Nederlands Fotomuseum, was fairly tense. During the second Masterclass, it took a while for the candidates as well as the Masters to find the right format. The first selection of the resulting images was discussed in the third Masterclass. Breda Photo is a major international event and taking part in this Masterclass gave us a fantastic opportunity to exhibit our work. We can show people that amateur photographers don’t need to play second fiddle to the professionals.”
The Masterclass Breda Photo exhibition can be seen in and around Nieuwe Veste at Molenstraat 6.