Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation

Academic dialogue

It is one of the main objectives of the Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation to encourage academic exchange on the subject. In collaboration with partners from an international network of museums, universities and other institutions, the Foundation develops ideas and creates platforms to enable the dialogue among interested members of the public and artists, critics, curators and scientists. To this end, the Foundation holds events on current developments in the photography scene and organises symposia, lectures and artist talks.

Cooperation with the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Photographie (DGPh)


Every two years the Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Photographie (DGPh) jointly present the two prizes “Thinking Photography. DGPh Research Award” and the “Writing Photography. DGPh Award for Innovative Publication”. The award “Thinking Photography” is endowed with €3,000 and honours publications from the field of photographic theory and history that expand the topic area with important approaches from the humanities, cultural studies and social sciences. “Writing Photography” on the other hand is an award for innovative journalism that honours written formats such as essays, blog posts or columns that combine text and photographic material in a creative way. That prize is endowed with €1,000.


Jacques Henri Lartigue, ca. 1924; Photographie J. H. Lartigue, Ministère de la Culture (France), MAP-AAJHL

Research award “Thinking Photography”

Dr. Charlotte Bruns, substitute professor at the Institute for Media Research, Chemnitz University of Technology, receives the DGPh research award “Thinking Photography” 2022 for her dissertation “Spatial images and their ways of use. On the organisation of seeing in stereophotography”. In it, Bruns traces an extensive history of seeing as a sensory experience using stereographic photography from 1900 to present. 

The jury justifies its selection as follows: “With this large-scale study, Charlotte Bruns presents a stylistically and scientifically outstanding work. She dedicates herself to a historical topic like stereophotography and abstracts the associated visual and spatial experiences up to the use of virtual reality glasses. This way, she is forming a bridge to the present. She always remains consistent, explores new sources, opens up new perspectives and therefore makes an important contribution to research.”


Christian Walker, Untitled from The Theater Project, 1982-83. Postcard, private collection.

Award for innovative journalism “Writing Photography”

The “Writing Photography” 2022 award goes to Jackson Davidow, Curatorial Fellow in Photography at the Harvard Art Museum, Boston, USA, for his essay “Against Our Vanishing. Cruising the queer archives of a disappeared Boston”. This award recognises an essay that uses photographic traces to explore the queer community in Boston and its (in)visibility. 

In its statement, the jury writes: “It is undeniable that photographs are always a testimony to their time. But to what extent are pictures from past times not only documentation, but also a vehicle against forgetting? Davidow addresses this question in a vivid and highly sensitive way when he tracks down Nan Goldin’s early motifs in Boston, for example. Linguistically accentuated, this particular essay focuses on the queer community and its photographic representation, providing a wonderfully moving approach to dealing with the medium.”

The jury additionally gives two honourable mentions: One goes to Enis Demirer for his master thesis “Cruising Maryam Sahinyan’s photographic archive: Intertwining meanings of the archive between the personal and the public” (Thinking Photography). The other one goes to Maria Garth for her essay “Soviet Avant-Gardes and Socialist Realism. Women Photographers Bridging the Divide, 1930s–1960s” (Writing Photography).


The jury

The jury members for both awards in 2022 were: Dr. Carolin Görgen, Asscoiate professor Sorbonne Université, Paris, Department of American Studies, award winner “Thinking Photography” 2020; Alexandra König, Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation; Renée Mussai, Curator and Researcher, Autograph London; Miriam Zlobinski, Section Chair History and Archives, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Photographie (DGPh).


Magnum Panel
"The Photographer’s Legacy: Estate Planning in the Digital Era"

Edward Steichen File (c) The Halsman Archive 2022

How do photographers manage their legacies in the digital era? What new opportunities and challenges do technological advances and the Internet bring about? What tools and mechanisms can help ensure the life of photographic work? What are some of the questions that new channels of dissemination are raising about control over the work?

Photographer Cristina de Middel, Oliver Halsman from the Philippe Halsman estate, Peter Marlow’s estate representative Fiona Naylor, and an Artistate estate planner and NFT expert discussed different ways to approach legacy planning in the digital era. The talk was held by Ana Cruz Yabar on 11 November 2022. This talk was organized in partnership with the Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation and the Goethe Institut.

Symposium 10th Darmstädter Tage der Fotografie

The Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation has supported the one-day symposium of the 10th edition of the Darmstädter Tage der Fotografie on 21 April 2018 that examined and discussed the annual topic of the festival "Perspectives - Strategies of photographic acting" from different angles. International experts in photography, renowned curators and participating artists of the festival presented their perspectives and strategies on working with photography.

Gordon Parks. I Am You. Selected Works 1942–1978

Together with the two renowned experts Professor Dr Annette Brauerhoch (film scholar, Universität Paderborn) and Dr Simon Wendt (American Studies Assistant Professor, Goethe Universität Frankfurt am Main) the Deutsche Boerse Photography Foundation took a closer look at Gordon Parks as a filmmaker, photographer and political activist during a panel discussion on 11 December 2017. What was the reciprocal effect of his work as a photojournalist and filmmaker, both on a thematic and aesthetic level? Did he succeed in using his photography to fight the suppression and exploitation of minorities? What influence did the US Civil Rights Movement have on his view of the world? These are some of the questions that were important to the experts to reach a deeper understanding of Gordon Parks, his many talents and complex body of work.

Magnum Photos at 70. Past - Present - Future

On the occasion of the international photo agency Magnum's 70th anniversary the Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation put together a programme for 24 and 25 November 2017 in cooperation with Magnum Photos and Leica Camera Frankfurt, that allowed to meet Magnum members in Frankfurt.

A symposium offered insights into Magnum's history and current developments through live panel discussions with photographers Thomas Dworzak (DE), David Hurn (UK) and Newsha Tavakolian (IRN) as well as with film sequences from the project "Magnum Time" by Marco Bischof, a Zurich filmmaker and son of Magnum photographer Werner Bischof. The evening was chaired by Marco Bischof and Anne-Marie Beckmann. The programme also comprised a one-day workshop for the interested audience with portfolio reviews and presentations by the three Magnum photographers Dworzak, Hurn and Tavakolian.

An accompanying exhibition showed photographs by Magnum members from 24 November and 9 December 2017. The exhibition displayed works from the Art Collection Deutsche Börse as well as from the Leica Gallery, spanning from the early 1950s until today. With images from photographers such as Werner Bischof, Thomas Hoepker, Martin Parr, Paul Fusco and Alec Soth, many different photographic approaches were represented.

This video offers a little impression of the event.

WATCHED! Surveillance Art & Photography, C/O Berlin

In collaboration with C/O Berlin, the Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation organised a series of events between June 2016 and April 2017. Six discussion panels and lectures examined issues such as surveillance, big data and the dissemination of private moments online from different perspectives. Panelists and lecturers included internationally renowned artists such as Hasan Elahi or Beat Streuli, sociologists such as Harald Welzer, politicians (e.g. Heiko Maas, German Federal Minister of Justice and Consumer Protection), the author James Bridle as well as psychologists, media experts and various legal experts.

Artist Talks

Jonas Bendiksen and Thomas Dworzak, 20 April 2021, artist talk. In an event accompanying the presentation “Open for Business – Magnum photographers on commission”, the curators of the exhibition, Anne-Marie Beckmann (Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation) and Mirjam Kooiman (Fotografiemuseum Amsterdam) discussed the special challenges of working on group commissions with the two Magnum photographers Jonas Bendiksen and Thomas Dworzak.

Cristina De Middel and Martin Parr, 16 December 2020, artist talk. On the occasion of the exhibition "Open for Business - Magnum photographers on commission", Anne-Marie Beckmann talked to the two photographers about the practice of commercial commissioned work in general, about its role within the renowned Magnum Photos agency and about the interaction between their personal work and commissions from companies and organizations.

Susan Meiselas, 7 November 2019, Artist Talk at Magnum Photos, Paris. The Director of the Photography Foundation, Anne-Marie Beckmann, was be in conversation with the photographer Susan Meiselas, who was the winner of this year's Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation Prize and whose works are also part of the collection.

Sylvain Couzinet-Jacques and Jaya Pelupessy, Artist talk at the HfG (Hochschule für Gestaltung) Offenbach with the two up-and-coming artists from the Foam Talent program with Anne-Marie Beckmann (Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation) and Marcel Feil (Foam Fotografie Museum Amsterdam) about their work and the participation in support programs for young artists.

Dana Lixenberg, Julian Röder and Tobias Zielony, 25 June 2019, Artist Talk at Foam Amsterdam with Anne-Marie Beckmann about their works and topics such as identity, subcultures, their representation and the influence of social media on these aspects on their work.

John Stezaker, 9 April 2019, in conversation with Anne-Marie Beckmann about his photographic work at The Photographers' Gallery in London.

Lucas Foglia, 5 September 2017, lecture by the American photographer on his new photo book "Human Nature" and on the stories behind the images.

Hosam Katan, 29 November 2016, presentation by the young Syrian photographer of his photographs documenting the civil war in Aleppo.

Other Projects

New guest professorship at HfBK Dresden

The renowned British-Egyptian photographer Laura El-Tantawy will take up the first international short-term guest professorship in photography at the Dresden University of Fine Arts (HfBK) in the summer semester 2023. This professorship is made possible by the Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation in cooperation with the Dresden-based association Portraits Hellerau e.V. Laura El-Tantawy will also be appointed to the jury of the PORTRAITS – Hellerau Photography Award 2023.

The common goal of the three partners is to expand artistic teaching at the HfBK Dresden in the field of photography through this new international guest professorship. The existing teaching programme at the HfBK Dresden will be complemented by a project-based workshop for master students and advanced students, which will be led by Laura El-Tantawy. An exhibition in June 2023 in the rooms of the academy will show the students’ works created during the workshop.

Laura El-Tantawy (*1980) dedicates her artistic work primarily to themes that encompass the search for identity, belonging, ecological aspects and social issues. She combines documentary to painterly-abstract photographs with each other. In 2005, she moved to Cairo and started her famous photo book “In the Shadow of the Pyramids” (2015). This deals with the Arab Spring in Cairo from 2011–2013, where she combines old family photos, testimonies, portraits of demonstrators and street scenes. Her works have already received numerous awards; among others, the artist was selected for the shortlist of the Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation Prize in 2016.

The decision to award the guest professorship was made by a joint jury of the three partner institutions. The workshop and exhibition as well as the inclusion of the guest professor in the jury of the PORTRAITS Hellerau – Photography Award 2023 aims to convey new impulses to the students and to strengthen Dresden as a place for contemporary artistic photography.