Born in Bulgaria in 1986, Valery Poshtarov was fortunate to grow up in a home filled with art and poetry, thanks to his artist father and poet mother. His early education at the National High School of Arts in Varna laid the groundwork for what would become a lifelong commitment to the arts. Seeking to deepen his understanding, he moved to Paris to study Plastic Arts at the Sorbonne.
His work began to attract some attention, including a nomination for the Cartier-Bresson Award by the Bulgarian Cultural Institute in Paris. Over the years, he's had the opportunity to showcase his work in a wide array of personal and collective exhibitions across Europe, Asia, and Australia.
In 2011, Valery took a step into the digital world by setting up what became Eastern Europe's first online art gallery. This venture allowed him the freedom to explore long-term projects, eventually leading to the establishment of the PhotoAnthology Foundation, a non-profit dedicated to socially impactful documentary projects.
One such endeavor was his 2022 photobook, "The Last Man Standing In The Rhodope Mountains." The project, which took 14 years and covered 985 villages, has found homes in several international collections, including the MoMA in New York City, MEP Paris and the Museum of Photography in Berlin.
His most recent project, "Father and Son," has been recognized by several organizations, winning the Cortona On The Move Award and being named a finalist in several prestigious photography awards among which LensCulture Portrait Awards, and Head On Portrait Awards. The project aims to challenge societal norms around masculine intimacy shaping the shared identity of human connection and legacy.
While grateful for the recognition his work has received, Valery remains focused on his artistic journey, continually seeking ways to evolve and contribute meaningfully to the world of art and photography.
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* the portrait above: Valery Poshtarov by Florian Demirev, 2022