Stefanos Kouratzis (b. 1975, Athens, Greece), award-winning visual storyteller /photographer and writer based in (The Republic of) Cyprus, is the Artistic director of Limassol Photography Festival for 2023.
He studied at Focus, School of Art Photography, Video and New Technologies (Athens, Greece) and has continued his professional development with online courses at the MoMA (Museum of Modern Art, New York) and Magnum Photos.
In 2018, he participated at the 16th Venice Biennale of Architecture, part of the Cyprus Pavilion (I Am Where You Are) with three photographic projects.
Three years later, in 2021, he was invited by the curatorial team to contribute a series of photographs to the first retrospective exhibition "Past-forward: Stavros Economou Unarchived" at "SPEL," the State Gallery of Contemporary Art, Nicosia. Also, the photos were projected when the exhibition was moved at Le Corbusier’s Unité d’habitation in Marseill, France.
In 2022 he curated both exhibitions of photographer Sebastian Rich "Fleeing to Safety"at Kasteliotissa Hall in Nicosia (June) and at the University of Cyprus (October) for UNHCR Cyprus country office and Universitas Foundation.
Kouratzis' latest project, "ELLE - Cyprus in the Feminine," was commissioned by P.I.O. and opened the Nicosia International Festival in 2022. It was also exhibited at the Austrian National Library in Vienna in January 2023.
Selected awards include Gomma Photography Grand 2021 (Finalist), PDN (Photo Annual), IPA (International Photography Awards), PX3 (Prix de la Photographie, Paris) and Fujifilm EuroPress Awards (Cyprus).
Over the years has collaborated with local and international media organizations including AFP, Reuters, Associated Press, Xinhua, France24, Arte (France) and BBC Radio and has covered major stories in hostile zones including Lebanon War 2006, Gaza Strip, Iran, Bam City earthquake and during the operation “Iraqi Freedom" he was embedded on a USS aircraft carrier ”.
Kouratzis' photographs have been collected by private collectors in Cyprus, Greece, Spain, Brazil, Belgium and USA, as well as featured in publications such as books and catalogs, including the Press and Information Office's publications for the Republic of Cyprus.
His articles (Photography and Journalism) have been published in Cyprus, Greece, USA, England and Poland.
He is a full member of the Union of Cyprus Journalists, of IFJ (International Federation of Journalists) and member of the Performance Evaluation Committee of the THYMELI Scheme (EAP) of Deputy Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Cyprus.
The way he constantly explores Photography as medium, makes his work quite diverse, multidimensional and multi-layered as he constantly balances between long-term projects and exploring different realms of expression.
"Photography unlocks the chains of reality"