Farzana Wahidy was born in Kandahar, Afghanistan, in 1984 and moved to Kabul at the age of six. She attended school during the years of the Afghan civil war. After the Taliban came to power and prohibited the education of women, she secretly attended an underground school. When the Taliban were defeated Farzana continued her education, competing high school then enrolling in a two-year program sponsored by AINA Photojournalism Institute.
In 2004 Farzana began working as a photographer for Agence-France Presse, becoming the first female Afghan photojournalist to work for an international wire service. Later, Farzana joined the Associated Press news agency.
In 2007 she received a scholarship to take the two-year photojournalism program at Loyalist College in Belleville, Ontario, returning to Afghanistan in 2010.
In 2016 wahidy received the 2016 Premier’s Award for Creative Arts and Design in Ontario Canada. The Premier’s Awards recognize outstanding college graduates who work to improve the social and economic well-being of those in their communities and around the world.
In 2015 Wahidy was honored with the Norman Vaughan Indomitable Spirit Award in the United State.
In 2009 she was an Open Society Institute grantee for her documentary project on Afghan women.
In 2008 she was the recipient of the National Geographic All Roads Photography Program Merit Award and also received a Gold Award in the Portrait category in the College Photographer of the Year competition at the University of Missouri.
Wahidy’s work has been in variety of international magazines like Sunday Times, Le Monde 2, Medame Figaro, Gent magazine, CanWest News, Canadian Geographic, More Magazine, Polka Magazine, Le-temps magazine, New Statesman, Guardian, Deutsche-Welle and etc and she has worked for many NGOs as well like Save the Children, Red Cross, UNDP, ICRC, NRC, Acted and etc.
From 2014 to 2016 she worked on a projected that she created to train photographers across Afghanistan, to review and lobby the copyright law in Afghanistan and to conducted a research on the history of photography in Afghanistan. Through this project 62 photographers were trained in different provinces of Afghanistan in intermediate level and 15 in advanced. A research was done on the history of photography for the first time and with the help of several organizations the Copyright law was reviewed and lobby.
Wahidy’s photographs have been presented in solo and group exhibitions in: Afghanistan, Canada, United Sates, India, Pakistan, Germany, Italy, Norway, Geneva, China, and Finland.
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