The Neue Schule International Class produces high-end photographers capable of expressing themselves visually with eloquence. The course is aimed at forward and critical thinking photographers from around the world looking to produce and publish quality work regardless of genre or field.
As a photography course taught in English, the Neue Schule International Class is designed for students who would like to spend a year at Neue Schule für Fotografie Berlin. Conceived in 2014 as an abridged English language version of our German program, in 2020 the course has been restructured and redeveloped to meet even higher standards and is now a year-long program co-ordinated by Ben Chislett.
Classes are taught biweekly, with roughly three to four days of class every second week. Classes take place from 10:00 to 17:00. In class-free weeks, students work on their assignments.
Photo: Ivan Tomasevic
Contemporary Photography and Image Making
Throughout this professional photography class with Eva Maria Ocherbauer, students learn to develop coherent short and long-term photographic projects and series, both by themselves and in groups.
The core of Eva’s teaching is image-making. Throughout the year students gain a conscious and intuitive understanding of the visual language of photography. Students learn how to overcome visual and psychological preconceptions and conditioning in order to find their particular photographic signature. The training covers conceptual project-based thinking through sequences of critiques. A major focus lies on developing ideas using contemporary practices and the process of editing towards the production of a consistent and compelling narrative to enable students to move into professional discourses.
Currently she is developing a collaborative project with students on surveillance for an exhibition in 2021.
Practical Photography by Ben Chislett is a mix of camera basics, analogue photography, studio lighting, digital darkroom image editing and fine-art printing techniques combined with visual psychology which form the basis of a professional coherent workflow. The practical classes are fundamental to any stringent image making practice. The exercises in and between classes are geared towards effectively producing coherent visual content through the conscious implementation of photographic techniques in order to trigger and enhance emotion in the viewer.
In the studio lighting classes students learn how to work in a professional studio, learning how to set and mould light with modern lighting equipment. In the digital darkroom sessions of the practical photography classes, students are familiarized with the basics of digital exposure and reproduction, learning to present coherent results efficiently for image review, printing and publication. Students are also familiarized with the use of essential tools and programs for image editing and creation.
Photo: Ivan Tomasevic
History and Theory of Photography
InHistory and Theory of Photography lectures students acquire a basic knowledge about the history of photography and discuss contemporary photographic artists. With Annika Turkowski students learn to contextualise their work within the field as well as learning about current trends, postcolonialism and the history of photography and art. Annika deals with texts and books on photography in an interactive way that is essential to achieving a perspective on one’s own work.
Advanced Analog Techniques, Large Format Cameras and Large Scale Printing
Once they have learnt the basics, fine art printer and photographer Csilla Szabo takes over, teaching the students high-end analog skills including professional darkroom methodologies working with fibre-based papers, toning, analogue retouching and museum grade archival techniques. She also teaches Large Format Camera photography and Large-Scale Printing classes.
Tegwen Evans teaches students about contemporary issues, rights and quandaries within the field. Exploring subjects like permission and the fluid line between privacy and self-expression, they bring a much needed fresh approach to difficult discussions opening up delicate and taboo themes for self-analysis.
Foto: Ben Chislett
Students are encouraged to use their time at the Neue Schule to be as creative as possible and to engage in intensive self-study to complement their classes as well as carrying out their assignments. To this end we allow students near 24/7 access to our facilities including our darkrooms, studio and fine-art printing facilities.During the course several extra (and mostly free) classes are offered on a range of themes. Currently we have a module on Environmental photography going as a cooperation with Grün Berlin including two-day workshops by Jon Juarez, Sandra Bergemann and World Press Photo award winner Esther Horvath. Parallel to this we are collaborating on a project with Jacques Nkinzingabo and the Kigali Centre of Photography in Rwanda, also on environmental issues.
Coming soon are fashion exchange projects with Weißensee Kunsthochschule.
Teachers, Lecturers and Mentors
Our Team is made up of a wide range of skilled professionals. Ben Chislett (coordinator and Practical Photography), Eva Maria Ocherbauer (Contemporary Photography and Image Making), Csilla Szabo (Advanced Analog Techniques), Annika Turkowski (History and Theory of Photography), Tegwen Evans (Ethics), Esther Horvath (Arctic Photography Guest Lecturer) and several other Workshop and Professional Practice guest lecturers including Jon Juarez and Sandra Bergemann from our partner Grün Berlin (Enviromental Photography), Gabriela Worgitzki/Kaschierung Berlin (Mounting), Thomas Gust/Bildband Berlin (Photobooks) . Past guest lecturers include Peter Bialobrzeski (Photographer), Dr. Christiane Stahl, and Felix Hoffmann (C/O Berlin Gallery) and Hannes Wanderer (Peperoni Books).
Requirements and Selection Process
Pre-requisites for participation in the International Class include a basic knowledge of photographical and creative fundamentals, and an interesting approach or body of work. Participants are hand picked for their individuality based on their potential.
Initial applications with a portfolio, cv and statement are reviewed and suitable candidates are then invited to an interview (live if possible, Zoom or Skype if not). Based on the work and the interview a decision is made whether applicants get a spot on the program.
€2370 per semester, a payment by monthly instalments of €395 per month is possible for the second semester.
You may also use the button “Apply now” to submit your application documents.
The application deadline for the upcoming semester 2021 is 22 November 2020. Selected applicants will be invited to an interview on 4/5 December 2020. Interviews can be held via Zoom with applicants living outside Berlin.
Interviewees should bring a portfolio with 10-30 photographs (minimum size 13x18cm, maximum size 30x40cm) for discussion. The final decision on admission will be made on the basis of submitted photographs and the interview.
Interviews via Skype are available upon request for applicants from overseas.
Please note that all classes in this course are taught in English.
Since we are a private school, the Neue Schule für Fotografie is not able to help the students with their visa application. We can provide a confirmation letter once you have been admitted to the course.
The terms start in late February and late August each year respectively. Our Summer Semester 2021 starts 22 February 2020 and ends 22 August 2021.
For any questions regarding your studies at Neue Schule, please first check our FAQs. We also organize an Open Day in November 2020, offering you a chance to visit our studios and photo labs, see current work, and discuss photography and school life first hand with our students, staff, and lecturers.
Giuseppe D’Addurno and Sara Queirolo next to a print by Sara of Giuseppe
“The IC course at the Neue Schule opened my mind and widened my visions. Very prepared teachers helped me with finding my own artistic path, and how to express myself visually.”
Giuseppe D’Addurno, Italy, 2019/2020
“The Neue Schule International class is a beautiful dive into the deepest secrets of photography!
It’s a “must to” regarding knowledges for everyone who wants to make the “next step” in photography. It gave me the possibility to think, work and interact with people and topics which are so inspiring and contemporary, defining the nowadays world. It opened my mind as a person and showed me the real power of photography. It made me grow as a photographer as much as a person and I am really happy that this course has been a step in my photographer career.”