Sarah Blesener Wins $30,000 CatchLight Fellowship

Students from School #18 perform a show at the local theater in Sergiyev Posad, Russia, 15 Dec 2016. The show promotes the cadet school at School #18. Sarah Blesener/Alexia Foundation

Sarah Blesener is one of three recipients of the inaugural $30,000 CatchLight Fellowship for Toy Soldiers, the same project for which she was just awarded The Alexia 2017 grant. The work explores rising nationalism among youth in the U.S. and Russia. Continue reading

Announcing the Recipients of The Alexia 2017 Grants

Students train in firearms at the Historical-War Camp, in Borodino, Russia. 24 July 2016. Borodino is famous for a battle fought on 7 Sep 1812 - the deadliest day of the Napoleonic Wars. 350 adolescents are in attendance, ranging in ages from 11 to 16. They are using air-soft guns for the practice and competition. The camp teaches information about the basic kinds of weapons, bases and firing rules,  sniper rifles, and different type of weapons. Sarah Blesener/Alexia Foundation

The Alexia Foundation is pleased to announce the winners of The Alexia 2017 grant competition. The recipient of The Alexia $20,000 professional grant is Sarah Blesener of New York for Toy Soldiers, which documents rising nationalism among youth in the U.S.

The recipient of The Alexia student grant is Monica Jorge of The International Center of Photography for My Grandfather’s Keeper, which documents the sacrifices of senior spouses unprepared for caretaking. The student award of excellence recipients are Camillo Pasquarelli, David Denil, Riel Sturchio and Joy Yi. Continue reading

Our Stories That Drive Change Seminar is This Weekend: Here’s What You Need to Know


Our first ever seminar of its kind, Latin America: Stories That Drive Change takes place this weekend, April 8 & 9 at the University of Miami School of Communication. The seminar will celebrate the work of Latin American photographers, while bringing in a diverse body of speakers who will help and inspire all visual journalists to make work that brings change.

For those attending, we have some important details to share with you.
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Aaron Vincent Elkaim: Update from the Amazon


The controversial Belo Monte mega dam has been in planning for over three decades. After being halted by indigenous protests and international outcry in the late 80’s it was redesigned and pushed through with construction beginning in 2012 amidst renewed protest.

Today the dam is mostly complete blocking the unique environment of a part of the Xingu known as the Big Bend. Numerous indigenous tribes and riverine communities in the region have been impacted and one third of the city of Altamira has been permanently flooded by the nearby Belo Monte Dam displacing over 20,000 people.

In this latest post, we are sharing the stories and knowledge Aaron Vincent Elkaim recounted in his recent Alexia Foundation Instagram take over. Continue reading

Pablo Corral Vega: Stories That Drive Change Speaker Highlight

Photo by Pablo Corral Vega.

The next tremendous speaker we would like to highlight from our upcoming Latin America: Stories That Drive Change seminar in Miami is Pablo Corral Vega, one of the most important individuals in photojournalism today. Corral is the founder and director … Continue reading

Remarks from Our Founder in The Alexia’s 27th Year

Ed Kashi, Keith Jenkins and Amy Pereira review projects during the judging of The Alexia 2017 competition. Photo by Mike Davis.

These weekend, we concluded the judging for The Alexia grant for the 27th year. As is tradition, co-founder Aphrodite Tsairis closed the competition with her thoughts on the process. We wanted to share her moving and perceptive remarks with you…

“Each year we learn through this competition that photography is more than a means of expression; it is a different way of seeing, one that treats each moment as something irreplaceable.

Each photographer’s work we viewed today whether they were students or professionals – each one was, in the words of the great Alfred Eisenstaedt, struggling ‘to find and catch the storytelling moment.'” Continue reading

Early Bird Pricing for Miami Seminar Ends April 1

Photo by Mauricio Lima, Winner of POYLatam 2015, provided by POYLatam.

Latin America: Stories That Drive Change is promising to be an inspiring and dynamic event. Taking place April 8 & 9 at the University of Miami School of Communication, the seminar will feature talks by the best in their fields, break-out sessions to go in-depth on areas of interest and project reviews to refine grant applications. Plus, we’ll are hosting a special reception on Saturday, April 8 where we will announce the winners of The Alexia 2017 grants.

Currently, the price to attend Latin America: Stories That Drive Change is $95. That price is only valid until this Saturday, March 25 at midnight. Register now to lock in this price. After Friday, the cost for the seminar will rise to $110. Continue reading

Mike Davis: Stories That Drive Change Speaker Highlight

Carlos Javier Ortiz, Sarah Leen, Mike Davis, Alexia Chair at Syracuse University, Julia Dolan, Aphrodite and Peter Tsairis at The Alexia 2015 judging.

Mike Davis is a legend and a genius. He is responsible for some of the most important photo editing of our time and has led some of the most important photography teams journalism has ever assembled.

Mike currently holds the Alexia Tsairis Chair for Documentary Photography at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. He teaches advanced storytelling classes, runs the Alexia Foundation Grants competition and creates special initiatives while continuing to work with photographers the world over as a picture editor.

For Latin America: Stories That Drive Change, Mike will be explaining what grants are available and how to successfully apply for them based on his extensive experience administering The Alexia grants, as a jury member for a variety of grants and as a photo editor, who has guided numerous photographers to success. In his break-out session, he will be discussing how to select and sequence images for maximum impact, achieving the third effect that results from the successful interplay of two images.
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Mia Tramz: Stories That Drive Change Speaker Highlight

Still from Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Courtesy of Mia Tramz.

The next incredible speaker for Latin America: Stories That Drive Change we would like to feature is Mia Tramz. Mia is the Managing Editor of LIFE VR, Time Inc’s company wide virtual reality initiative, responsible for developing and producing original experiences across the the media company’s 30+ titles, including TIME, Sports Illustrated, People, InStyle, Essence, and Travel + Leisure.

Tramz is truly a leader and revolutionary thinker in the development of Virtual Reality and 360 video. We are honored to have Mia on our Alexia Photojournalism Advisory Council and thrilled to be able to bring her to our Latin America: Stories That Drive Change seminar where she will be discussing and demonstrating VR and 360 video. Continue reading

Adriana Zehbrauskas: Stories That Drive Change Speaker Highlight

Huehuetonoc, Guerrero, Mexico.
"Family Matters" 
A portrait of the girls Elsi Meredith, Alma Aleli y Daila Gisel, in Huhuetonoc, a small village in the mountains of the southern Mexican Sate of Guerrero. I set up camp in front of the main church, with the little wifi direct printer. It was moving to see all the people coming over and asking to have their pictures taken. Rubi, the mom, said it was the this as the photographic print they ever owned. 
Photo © Adriana Zehbrauskas

The Alexia Foundation visual storytelling seminar Latin America: Stories That Drive Change takes place in less than one month. The second phenomenal speaker at the seminar we’d like to celebrate is Adriana Zehbrauskas.

Born in Sao Paolo Brazil, Adriana is based in Mexico City. Her documentary work focuses on issues related to The Mexican Drug War, migration and religion. She works throughout Mexico and Central and South America and is a regular contributor to The New York Times, UNICEF, Buzzfeed News, Bloomberg and The Washington Post. Continue reading