Dirk-Jan Visser is a documentary photographer, senior lecturer and certified board member with a background in arts and journalism. In his current practice, he is interested in stakeholder management within ecological humanities. Using walking as a research method, he focus on the interrelationships and different interests between all living entities in different landscapes.
Dirk-Jan Visser teaches at the Photography department of the KABK. He obtained his BA in Fine Arts from the Academy Minerva Groningen in 2005. Dirk-Jan Visser currently holds different board positions, including a position at the supervisory board of the World Press Photo Foundation.
He considers his practice as an intermediary to share and connect insights, methods and ideas from the boardroom, the classroom and through his documentary work. Through his practice, he aims to promote a better understanding of different perspectives and interests around themes which he calls ‘society in conflict’ and ‘landscape in conflict’. Interested in stakeholder management, he is currently fascinated by a new governance model (Zoöp) which makes the interests of nonhuman life part of organizational decision making.
He is dedicated to creating innovative visual stories to appeal to a large audience. The publishing platforms he uses vary from mainstream media, books, and interactive documentaries to exhibitions – as long as the form serves the story. In collaboration with makers and researchers from various disciplines within the creative industry, journalism, arts, and science, he produces independent (media) publications, interactive productions and exhibitions, incorporating and developing unconventional ideas and new approaches with the aim to have impact. Among other things, he is proud of several nominations for a Gouden Kalf, winning the Dutch Design Award, exhibiting at the Venice Architecture Biennale and being part of ‘In securities: Tracing Displacement and Shelter’ exhibition at MoMA, New York.
Besides the documentary work, he is one of the initiators and owners of Atelier aan de Middendijk, a small farmhouse in northern Groningen (NL), which serves as a residence for artistic practice to create work in relation to the inspiring surroundings. Lastly, he is the co-initiator and curator of the research platform The Walking Seminar, an artistic multidisciplinary research platform that brings together artists, activists and scientists on issues related to landscape and the Anthopocene.
Teaching research statement
With the notion that the world does not revolve around the individual neither around the arts, I challenge students to connect with the world outside the academy. How does this world function, who has the power, where are decisions made and what is inclusive representation. How can art students position themselves in a hyper-complex world where their work, their vision or their practice can add value and create impact?