Image- Based Strategies for Social Change

Exploring Meaningful Media in the Post Pandemic Era

Screen Arts School and Image Cafe, together with Dean Emeritus Fred Ritchin, are delighted to announce our first online certificate program, Image-based Strategies For Social Change, a two-month deep-dive into visual storytelling, which will take place in April 2021.

The program begins with a two-week intensive seminar and technical workshops, then a four-week period to create projects working closely with individual mentors, Debi Cornwall, Monica Alcazar Duarte, and Kent Klich, and workshops and mentorships over the last two weeks learning how to best design and present one’s work. Outside guests will be invited periodically both to speak and to critique student work.


Dean Emeritus ICP, Author

Fred Ritchin

Photo Credit: Maria Cherdantseva


Fred Ritchin

Fred Ritchin is Dean Emeritus of the International Center of Photography in New York. He was professor of Photography and Imaging at New York University (1991-2014) where he also taught for eleven years in the Interactive Telecommunications Program and co-founded the Photography and Human Rights program. Ritchin served as picture editor of the New York Times Magazine (1978-82), executive editor of Camera Arts magazine (1982-83), and in 1999 co-founded and directed PixelPress, an experimental online publication that collaborated on humanitarian initiatives to end polio globally, to advance the Millennium Development Goals, and to support the education of children orphaned by the Rwandan genocide, among other initiatives. He created the first multimedia version of the New York Times (1994-95) and the following year conceived and conceived and edited the first non-linear online documentary project “Bosnia: Uncertain Paths to Peace,” nominated by the New York Times for a Pulitzer Prize in public service. He also wrote the first major article on the digital revolution’s coming impact on imagery for the New York Times Magazine in 1984, and the first book on the same subject, In Our Own Image: The Coming Revolution in Photography, in 1990. He has also written After Photography (2008), published in seven languages, and Bending the Frame: Photojournalism, Documentary, and the Citizen (2013). Ritchin has curated many exhibitions, including “Contemporary Latin American Photographers,” “An Uncertain Grace: The Photographs of Sebastião Salgado,” “Mexico Through Foreign Eyes,” and “What Matters Now? Proposals for a New Front Page.” He writes, teaches and lectures widely on the potentials of media in the digital age.

I always believed that photography was subjective, interpretive and certainly did not represent the truth, but I did think that its status as a societal and historical referent needed to be both safeguarded and illuminated….now photojournalism is devolving into yet another medium perceived as intending to shock, titillate, sell, distort.