Viktor Naumovski and Mafalda Rakoš nominated for the Steenbergen Stipendium 2019

19 August 2019

We are thrilled with the selection of our two KABK Photography (BA) graduates Viktor Naumovski and Mafalda Rakoš in the shortlist of five nominations for the Steenbergen Stipendium, the most important prize for talented photographers in the Netherlands.

Exhibition and Award ceremony

The works of the five nominees will be exhibited at the Nederlands Fotomuseum from 16 November 2019 to 9 February 2020, and the winner will be announced during the award ceremony on 15 January 2020. This year, the jury is made up of Merel Bem (jury chairperson and art critic & writer), Henk Wildschut (photographer) and Teun van der Heijden (photography book designer).

'Photographers still like to embrace moving images but, this year, we mainly opted for photo series. These series are predominantly focused on experimental elements, love for traditional techniques, and an eagerness to learn more about subjects outside of the student’s immediate environment’.
Jury chairperson Merel Bem

Viktor Naumovski (1996, North Macedonia), Standing in the Sun
With Standing in the Sun, Viktor Naumovski grabs the attention of his audience right from the outset. The short film (approx. ten minutes), a surreal coming-of-age story about a North Macedonian boy and his family set against the backdrop of a gutted, post-war Skopje, is instantly mind-blowing. It is difficult to believe that a student, someone who also grew up without any art in his immediate environment, has created a work that is so convincing and so unquestionably authentic.

Naumovski wrote the script with his friends and family in mind. They also play the different characters in the film, incorporating their own ideas and personalities, which ensures that they never become clichés. They act freely and without inhibitions; apparently, Naumovski is not just a talented creator of images but also a credible director.

Mafalda Rakoš (1994, The Netherlands), A Story to Tell. Or: Regarding Male Eating Disorders
The fact that men can also develop anorexia may be known but it is seldom a topic of discussion or conversation. Mafalda Rakoš, who suffered from anorexia herself as a young woman, was interested in hearing stories from the male perspective, and she decided to do this on a large scale.

She found eleven men who not only allowed her to follow and photograph them but, at her request, also made drawings about how they felt. Thanks to her, we are able to see a perspective that does justice to the world as it is experienced by these men and which is also a beautiful photographic translation of how they experience their illness.

The publication she made is quite impressive. Her photographs (beautiful portraits, close-ups of bodies, images that record their daily lives) are interspersed with the raw drawings created from the inner world of people who have come to see their bodies as the enemy.

Previous editions of the prestigious Steenbergen Stipendium have been awarded to KABK alumni Daniël Siegersma (2018), Eline Benjaminsen (2017), Kimmo Virtanen (2016), Esther Hovers (2015), Olya Oleinic (2014), Willem Popelier (2008).