Spazio Labo’ – Centro di fotografia | Strada Maggiore 29 | Bologna



From reportage to independent project-making

The International Master in Documentary Photography with Davide Monteleone is addressed to all those who have a photo project or a defined idea to develop and it aims at helping the students in facing documentary photography practice through its professional, technical, creative, theoric and ethical aspects.

During the Master the students will learn how to develop a professional photo project by learning a solid, consistent and responsible working method. The class will explore technical and creative issues, together with a strong focus on ethics and individual responsibility. The Master will also be the occasion to analyze – starting from a sociocultural point of view – the most recent trends of contemporary documentary photography. Great attention will be directed to the understanding and differentiation of the various narrative forms adopted by documentary photography and how these forms perform in the market. The utmost goal of the Master is to give the students a professional training, a mind-set that will enable them to work with a personal narrative vision and a strong sense of awareness.


Authors dealing with documentary photography start by observing everyday life and, out of it, they carve their own photographic representation. Those who want to move forward in this field need to know not only the photographic technique and the market rules but first and foremost, they need to develop projects in an independent and responsible way. Thanks to Davide Monteleone’s experience – one of the most internationally renowned documentary photographers – the Master offers a complete hands-on course in doc photography. Students will develop a strong working method facing issues such as project-making, field work, the publishing market and independent production, client management, new kinds of assignment and possible outlets for dp projects.

Editorial and “reportage” photography have changed a lot these last years; the market crisis and new forms of language have opened up new paths when telling stories about reality. Genres hybridation and the possibility to work on one’s own (not always following assignments) have fostered new ways to develop projects; at the same time, these new factors underline the need to build up an ethical, creative and personal sense of responsibility.


MASTER IN FOTOGRAFIA DOCUMENTARIA> photojournalism and documentary photography – distinctions;
> documentary photography – a history: photojournalism, reportage, contemporary trends;
> professional careers; from editorial photography to independent projects;
> themes and researching, all that needs to be done before embarking in a project;
> planning and field work;
> language and narration: finding a style based on the story;
> personal distance: think before you shoot;
> media, ethics and responsibility: the role of photography and the photographer’s responsibility;
> the documentary photography market: publishing, agencies, galleries.

The course:

MASTER IN FOTOGRAFIA DOCUMENTARIAEach student will put into practice all the steps included in the realization of a professional photo project. Sharing and confronting with the teacher and fellow students will be a key added value to the course. Review and critical analysis will play a great role, especially in the production-phase. The students will work on finding their own style through the development of their project and personal assignments.

Individual skype calls between Davide Monteleone and each student will take place in January and February 2018.

Lectures and guest speakers (photo editors, photographers, curators) will enrich the Master’s programme. The Master will be held in English.


Davide Monteleone (b. 1974) is an artist and a visual journalist working on long term independent project using photography video and text. He has devoted himself to the study of social issues, exploring the relation between Power and individuals. Known for his specific interest in the post-soviet countries, he published four books on this topic: Dusha, Russian Soul in 2007, La Linea Inesistente, in 2009, Red Thistle in 2012 and Spasibo in 2013. His projects have brought him numerous awards, including several World Press Photo prizes, and grants such as the Aftermath Grant, European Publishers Award and Carmignac Photojournalism Award. He regularly contributes for leading publications all over the world, and his projects have been presented as installations, exhibitions and screenings at festivals and galleries worldwide including the Nobel Peace Center in Oslo, Saatchi Gallery in London, MEP in Paris and Palazzo delle Esposizioni in Rome. He is engaged with educational activities, regularly lecturing at universities and teaching workshops internationally. He is currently based in Moscow.


The Master is reserved to photographers who already have an ongoing project or intend to develop it during the course. Other requirements: fluent English, strong knowledge of the photographic technique, good postproduction skills. Before officially enrolling in the workshop, each applicant will do an admission interview with the Spazio Labo’ staff who will thoroughly examine the applicant’s portfolio and projects.

For more information, or to book an admission interview (in person or via Skype), just send an email at



November 3, 2017


April 8, 2018


70 hours



Friday, November 3, 2017, 6-9pm
Saturday 4, Sunday 5, November 2017, 10am-6pm
Saturday 16, Sunday 17, December 2017, 10am-6pm
Saturday, January 13, 2018 – individual Skype call
Saturday, February 10, 2018 – individual Skype call
Saturday 3, Sunday 4, March 2018, 10am-6pm
Saturday 7, Sunday 8, April 2018, 10am-6pm

*some dates might change in accordance with the teacher and the students.


Minimum 8
Maximum 12



The attendance certificate will be issued if the student has attended 75% of the Master’s hours.


Each student will have a personal evaluation based on the results achieved during the Master.



€2.300 if you enrol before September 22, 2017


€2.500 if you enrol after September 22, 2017


The Master is reserved to Spazio Labo’ members; to become a member you can either send an email at or fill in the forms directly here, in our headquarters in Bologna.

To enrol in the Master please send an email at with your name, surname, phone number and your availability (day and time) to do the admission interview. You can also enrol directly here at Spazio Labo’ during our opening hours: Mon-Thu 2-8pm; Fri 2-7pm.

Official enrollment is confirmed after the selection process is concluded and must be accompanied by a nonrefundable deposit by each applicant student. The deposit reserves the student’s place in the Master and can be issued in the form of cash or bank wire transfer. For more information: – +39 3283383634.

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