Boreal Bash V

Boreal Bash V: Visual Literacy Exchange in Rural Mexico

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Location: Centro Cultural Tenexcalco, Ejido Ajuatitla 1era Sección. Coxcatlán, San Luis Potosí, México.

Boreal Collective, Bronx Documentary Center and Centro Cultural Tenexcalco have joined forces for the 5th edition of the Boreal Bash. It will take place in Coxcatlán, San Luis Potosí, Mexico, from December 8 - 14, 2018.

As always, the Boreal Bash is a free event to attend. If you wish to be a student in the workshop, tuition fees are below. You may also apply for a scholarship to the workshop if you require financial assistance. 

The workshop will be held in the Huasteca Potosina region, a rich and diverse biosphere where 360,000 Nahuatl, Teenek, Huastecos and Xi’oi Indigenous people as well as Mestizos coexist in 397 communities. The conquest of the area began in the mid-1400s during the reign of Moctezuma Xocoyotzin. Nahuatl was then imposed as the main language. Later, the Spanish colonization had a major influence on the daily life of the people and dominated the local economy, resources and productive forces alike. Yet, Huasteca is also known for its long history of resistance and social movements, especially regarding land rights. Collective identity is expressed through dance, music and gastronomy, amongst other. Hence, this year’s Boreal Bash will explore narratives linked to territoriality and identity through conversations with members of the surrounding communities, storytellers, researchers and local artists.

Photographers, editors, and graphic designers will also share their experiences telling stories from around the globe and how they develop their vision and own ways of interpreting and expressing narratives.


This year's workshop coincides with the Virgin of Guadalupe celebrations, a heritage of Mexican syncretism. In Huasteca Potosina, participants will have the opportunity to document local stories through assignments meant to push their visual storytelling forward. In addition to support from invited photo professionals and instructors, each participant will be assisted by locals to help them navigate the different communities and understand current events and issues. Then, under the stewardship of the Centro Cultural Tenexcalco, stories produced during the workshop will be exhibited in 2019 in streets across the region.

Participants will select specialized breakout sessions designed to cover the needs of photographers in different stages of their careers. For instance, some will touch on the different facets of being a  freelance photographer: making portfolios and contacting editors, completing your first assignment and tackling the often-ignored realities of getting paid and running a successful business. Other sections will explore the nuances of documentary photography: developing intimacy with your subjects, balancing assignment work with long-term, personal projects, and how to choose the best form to tell and distribute your stories in both print and digital media. But also, and most importantly, to understand the responsibilities of representing stories with respect.

Please send questions to [email protected].

Parts of the funds will go directly to the Centro Cultural Tenexcalco and will be used to build a public theatre and produce local free artistic and cultural activities.

Testimonials: 

"For me, attending the Bash was a definite transformative moment. At the time, I was a year and a half into photojournalism, all self-taught and learning on the go. But I’d hit a hard ceiling of what I could learn on my own…by going to the Bash I broke through and have kept growing ever since. The Boreal folk taught me to push the documentary photography line beyond the usual, truly expanding what I thought was possible with storytelling." - Tomas Ayuso, Boreal Bash alumnus (2016)

"El Bash es una experiencia inspiradora! La metodología de enseñanza y capacidad de los instructores exhortan a nuevas formas de pensamiento y te motiva plantear tus proyectos a través de una perspectiva diferente. En mi caso, me permitió ampliar mi perspectiva sobre los alcances de la fotografía, aprendí que puede fungir como agente de cambio social o que puede ser usada como un método de terapia personal a través de la expresión artística." - Adrián Candia TreviñoBoreal Bash alumnus (2016)

Fees:

  • $400 workshop fee per student (International)
  • $250 for Latin American students (with passport)
  • $150 for Transportation/Accommodations (optional)

    *All prices in USD

    Click the buttons below to pay 50% of the workshop fee and reserve your spot. The remainder is due November 1, 2018.
Latin American Students
International Students
Transportation and Accommodation (optional)

Due to the high overhead expenses of this event, no refunds will be offered if student is not able to attend.

Boreal is looking for sponsors to provide student grants to attend the workshop. Please contact [email protected] if interested.

La Flor de Roca. Grupo de Teatro Ajuatitla del Centro Cultural Tenexcalco. Axtla de Terrazas, Mexico. 2016

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