Svetlana Bachevanova is the executive director of the FotoEvidence Association. She is a Bulgarian American photojournalist and a co-founder FotoEvidence Press (2010). The books she and her team publish expose injustice, create enduring evidence of violations of human rights and inspire social change.
Svetlana has worked with some of the most skilled and dedicated documentary photographers to publish their work, human stories recounting indisputable evidence of social injustice. In addition to managing the publication of books, FotoEvidence exhibits she curated have been mounted around the world to promote justice.
Svetlana conceived the FotoEvidence Book Award and the FotoEvidence W Award to support the work of photographers dedicated to the pursuit of human rights, publishing work that is unlikely to find commercial publication. Under her management FotoEvidence has occupied a unique space in the world of photojournalism as both a publishing house and activist organization.
Svetlana’s life as a photojournalist and human rights activist started underground at the first anticommunist newspaper in Bulgaria (1988). Today she is leading an organization that supports photographers like her and her former colleagues, who bring light to dark places and move people to action.
Established in 2020 in Montpellier, France The FotoEvidence Association is a non-profit media publishing and educational organization. Our mission is to draw attention to injustice, oppression, and assaults on human dignity through the lens of photographers working in this humanistic tradition. We fund and publish the work of the FotoEvidence Book Award and the W award winners in high-quality, hardbound photo books. FotoEvidence books focus on the most pressing social and environmental justice issues of our time, from genocide to global warming. They are published to expose injustice, to create evidence and call for accountability, and to inspire social change.
LINK to BOOKSTORE ONLINE: FotoEvidence | Documenting Social Injustice
FOTOEVIDENCE BOOK AWARD
The biennial FotoEvidence Book Award recognizes a documentary photographer whose project demonstrates courage and commitment in addressing a violation of human rights, a signiﬁcant injustice or an assault on human dignity. The selected project is published as part of a series of FotoEvidence books dedicated to long-form projects of documentary photographers working in the humanistic tradition.
Images alone will not change the world, so FotoEvidence Association often collaborates with advocacy organizations whose participation increases the impact of the photography. FotoEvidence has worked with Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, Fortify Rights, The Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting, ChildFund Australia, World Vision and several other international NGOs working on children’s health, women’s rights, indigenous rights, and human rights in general.
THE FOTOEVIDENCE W AWARD
The FotoEvidence Women award is devoted to engaged women photographers who want to tell their personal stories in the form of a photo book. Through their lenses women can shape the world differently and we want to give them this chance. During the past ten years, FotoEvidence has published 35 books to draw attention to human rights violations, oppression, and assaults on human dignity wherever they may occur. At this moment, women around the world are seeking equal rights and equal opportunity. FotoEvidence Women will support this global movement.
LINK TO W AWARD: FotoEvidence W Award
THE FOTOEVIDENCE WORKSHOP
This four-days, in-person workshop in September in the South of France is designed to educate photographers who work for humanitarian missions and NGOs and whose photographs are intended to serve both to support the work of the NGOs and as evidence of injustice or human rights violations.
The goal of the workshop is to provide photographers with the skill to undertake challenging assignments and to ensure photographers have a clear understanding of ethical guidelines and can be hired with confidence by NGOs.
LINK TO THE WORKSHOP: FotoEvidence | Documenting Social Injustice
We Cry in Silence initiative by Indian photojournalist Smita Sharma, in partnership with the FotoEvidence Association is our new initiative where we go beyond books to action. It is organized around Sharma’s seven-year investigation of sex trafficking of minors from Bangladesh and Nepal to India. The We Cry in Silence initiative will include the publication of a photo book that will be donated to libraries and community centers, a newspaper quality zine for free distribution, traveling exhibits that will visit some of the cities where human trafficking is concentrated in several rural areas of Bangladesh and Nepal. The traveling exhibit and associated zine will use Smita’s images and stories of survivals to raise awareness and inspire communities to respond.
The book and zine will be tri-lingual and available to local law enforcement agencies, with the goal of sensitizing them to the dangers young women face and the methods of traffickers.
The duration of the program is one year, starting in September 2022.
LINK TO THE INITIATIVE: FotoEvidence | Documenting Social Injustice
This is a link to a short video about books published by FotoEvidence that contributed to social change: DON’T LOOK: CAN Photojournalism Really Change Society – Mario Cruz on Talibés: Modern Day Slaves
Si j’étais une œuvre d’art : Great Wave by Katsushika Hokusai.
Si j’étais un musée : The Hill of Witches, Lithuania.
Si j’étais un artiste : Michelangelo.
Si j’étais un livre : Love in the time of Cholera/ Gabriel García Márquez.
Si j’étais un film : The Unbearable Lightness of Being/Philip Kaufman.
Si j’étais un morceau de musique : Nijaay (Orchestra Baobab).
Si j’étais un photo accrochée sur un mur : Seascapes / Hiroshi Sugimoto.
Si j’étais une citation : « Images alone won’t change the world. Images move people and people change the world. » David Stuart.
Si j’étais un sentiment : Compassion.
Si j’étais un objet : A guitar.
Si j’étais une expo : Don’t Look! Can Photography Really Change Society- FotoEvidence Virtual Gallery:
Si j’étais un lieu d’inspiration : Beach.
Si j’étais un breuvage : Red wine.
Si j’étais une héroïne: The Tank Man of Tiananmen Square.
Si j’étais un vêtement : Warm scarf.
• Carte blanche à Svetlana Bachevanova : Dedicated Photojournalists (mardi 24 mai 2022)
• Carte blanche à Svetlana Bachevanova : Unique role in the photojournalism eco system (mercredi 25 mai 2022)
• Carte blanche à Svetlana Bachevanova : FotoEvidence in France (jeudi 26 mai 2022)
• Carte blanche à Svetlana Bachevanova : The Digital Era (vendredi 27 mai 2022)
Lost your password?