Emine Gozde Sevim (b. 1985) is an award-winning photographer originally from Istanbul, Turkey.
Sevim graduated from Bard College in 2008 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Photography, Sociology and International Relations. During her college years, she studied old and new photographic methods and theory with pioneers in the field, including Gilles Peress, Stephen Shore, An-My Lê, John Pilson and Barbara Ess. As a result of her developing interest in the convergence between film/video and photography, she began experimenting with multimedia storytelling in 2007. Her first photo-roman piece was exhibited as part of a group exhibition “Stage Sight” in the Opera House of Hudson, in upstate New York the same year. For her thesis exhibition in 2008, she created a multimedia film entitled “In Search of Audra Prokofiev”, which screened along side of a photographic print exhibition with the same title at Bard College’s Woods Gallery.
Following graduation, Sevim was invited to work with various photographers of the Magnum Photos Agency in New York. Between 2008 and 2012, she assisted Gilles Peress on numerous projects in field research, book productions, and exhibitions, and Susan Meiselas on multimedia storytelling assignments for international venues. In 2010, in the role of associate producer and cinematographer, Sevim joined Marco Bischof, Swiss filmmaker and director of the Werner Bischof Estate, for MagnumTime project of the Magnum Foundation, to develop a non-linear interactive oral history platform about photographic traditions.
Alongside independent projects with pioneers in the field, since 2007, Sevim embarked on creating an “alternative” visual narrative in the context of post-9/11 era in an attempt to expand beyond the religio-political descriptions about the Middle-East. Her maternal family had left Kabul, Afghanistan in 1975, where Sevim returned to visit with her Afghan grandfather that year, in the aftermath of the U.S. invasion. Since then, she has worked in Israel and the West Bank, in Egypt and in Turkey as continuation of a comprehensive project about “lives-in-passing” in contested geographies. Her work to date, focusing most recently on the developments in Europe, deals with existentialist realities of societies in the midst of historic transitions.
Sevim’s works have been included in various exhibitions and publications internationally and won numerous international awards and grants. She is the author of “Embed in Egypt”, published by Kehrer Verlag (DE) in 2015, which was a finalist for the coveted MACK’s First Book Award in London (2014) and as a result added to the National Media Museum Collection in Bradford, U.K. Sevim is also the first, and to date the only, photographer of Turkish origin to become the grantee of the Magnum Foundation Fund (formerly known as the Emergency Fund). She was also selected as one of the 30 New and Emerging Photographers to Watch by Photo District News in 2016.