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Creative Writing Competition: Vivian Maier’s Photography

Posted by Speakeasy News > Thursday 30 September 2021 > Pedagogy

Vivian Maier's extraordinary photos of New York and Chicago streets, portraits and self-portraits, were discovered by chance in 2007. A selection is currently on show at the Musée du Luxembourg in Paris and we'd like to challenge your pupils to write stories inspired by the images.

This competition is now closed. Thank you so much to all the teachers who sent in their students' work. We'll be publishing our favourite stories in January.

We would like pupils to write an imaginative piece inspired by one of Maier's photographs. It's a creative writing assignment, not a request for a description or a report on Maier. The idea is to imagine what is happening in the image (or what happened before or after) for example. If there are a people in the image, what are they thinking? Or pupils can put themselves in the place of someone (the photographer or someone else) observing the scene.

We will choose our  favourite texts by level, and publish them on Speakeasy News.

You can read more about Maier and see more photos in our article and the exhibition trailer.

This competition is open to pupils at A2, B1 and B2 levels. Entries can be individual or group efforts. The texts must be in English and approximately 100 words long for A2 and 200 words for the higher levels.

If you are having a whole class or classes participate, it would be very helpful if you could send the entries collected by class, by post or e-mail.

Each entry should state the title of the photograph which inspired the text, and have the pupil's/pupils' name(s), age(s) and class level, teacher's name and school address. Please note: Pupils' surnames will  in no circumstances be used on the site and we will contact teachers whose pupils' work is chosen for publication to ascertain how to identify pupils (or not if they or their families wish them to appear anonymously.)

Entries must reach us by Wednesday 8 December 2021.

Send entries to:
Speakeasy News Vivian Maier Competition
Nathan Secteur Langues
92 avenue de France
CS 91464
75702 PARIS CEDEX 13

Or by e-mail.  (If you send an e-mail, please send .doc, .docx or .pdf documents ONLY.)

Vivian Maier
Musée du Luxembourg, Paris
Till 16 January 2022

There will also be a selection of photos on display in seven Métro stations:
Hôtel de Ville, La Chapelle, Luxembourg, Saint-Denis Porte de Paris, Gare de Lyon, Madeleine and Pyramides.

The Vivian Maier website has a large selection of her photos.

Ready to Use Downloadable resources ready to use in class
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Downloadable resources ready to use in class
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