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Newsletter October 2017

BITTER Chocolate Stories

Photos: Joana Choumali. Interviews: Marijn Heemskerk.

More than 2 million child labourers work on cocoa plantations in Ghana and the Ivory Coast, and tens of thousands of children are victims of trafficking and forced labour in cocoa production. Why? So that we, the consumers thousands of kilometres away, can eat the chocolate we love so much. In BITTER Chocolate Stories, which comprises a website, book and exhibition, we meet 15 of these children.

From 13 October until 22 November the exhibition is on show at Beurs van Berlage, Amsterdam. Surround yourself with monumental portraits of the children who harvest the cocoa. Look them in the eyes while they tell you their story.

BITTER Chocolate Stories is a collaboration between the Ivorian photographer Joana Choumali, Dutch journalist Marijn Heemskerk, Madame Bernadette Ouédraogo of GRADE-FRB (Burkina Faso), Tony’s Chocolonely and Paradox. Design: Kummer & Herrman.

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Workshops by photographers Ad Van Denderen and Lebo Tlali in Welkom

Lebohang Tlali and Ad van Denderen in Welkom, February 2017

Team Welkom Today is back in South-Africa to set up some pop-up exhibitions of Ad van Denderen’s early images shot in Welkom during the beginning of the nineties in the township of Thabong. Together with the South African photographer Lebo Tlali, Van Denderen will lead several workshops for students from different schools. The work of more than 100 pupils – themed ‘Who am I in 2017?’ – will be exhibited during the festive wrap-up in the townhall of Welkom on 5 November. During the stay, journalist Margalith Kleijwegt will blog for the Dutch magazine De Groene Amsterdammer.

The exhibition, together with the educational program at several schools, is part of the photo project Welkom Today, which Van Denderen carries out with Tlali for the upcoming years.

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Studio Aleppo in The Hague & Berlin

Studio Aleppo [The Hague] with photos made by Robin de Puy

Fifty residents from The Hague were portrayed on 16 and 17 September at the Humanity House by renowned Dutch photographer Robin de Puy. All portraits are on show at Humanity House until 30 October, together with the (glass) negatives and small prints originating from a destroyed photo studio that Syrian photographer Issa Touma found in the debris of Aleppo that formed the starting point of Studio Aleppo [Europe].

At the moment our partner GfHf is preparing the fourth Studio Aleppo, which will take place in Berlin. Four photographers from the German OSTKREUZ agency will portrait 50 citizens from Berlin on 14 and 15 October. The portraits are on show at the industrial Kühlhaus from 21 until 27 October.

By organizing the project in different European cities, we want to keep contributing to a positive change in the perception of refugees. Interested in setting up a Studio Aleppo yourself? Send a message to

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Exhibition Studio Aleppo [The Hague]

21/09 – 30/10/17

with portraits of Robin de Puy at Humanity House, The Hague

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Exhibition BITTER Chocolate Stories

13/10 - 22/11/17

at Beurs van Berlage, Amsterdam

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Photostudio and portrait gallery Studio Aleppo [Berlin]

13/10 - 27/10/17

at Kühlhaus, Berlin

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Exhibition Ebifananyi - Andrea Stultiens

27/09/17 - 18/02/18

at FOMU, Antwerp

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Launch Ebifananyi 8 at FOMU

Buy the book: BITTER Chocolate Stories