Two days ago she came back from Zurich and tomorrow she’s off again visiting clients in Munich. Kozva has been on the road a lot since she founded her photographers’ agency Shotview in Vienna in 2001. The agency now also represents stylists and the art director Mario Lombardo. It recently celebrated Berlin Fashion Week with a big 12-year anniversary party in an old church in Auguststraße. However, what is most important to the Peruvian, who grew up in Austria, is not leaving her 18-month-old son August alone for too long. She therefore restricts almost all her trips to one day. We spoke to her over a morning coffee in Mitte about her career and personal artistic preferences.
What did you do before you founded Shotview?
After school I studied Music and Dance Pedagogy at the Mozarteum University in Salzburg. After that, thanks to a scholarship, I lived in New York and during this time completely realigned myself. That’s how I came back to Austria, curated my first exhibition with artist friends and helped set up the Getty Images Office Vienna before working for Goldbach Media in marketing. I founded Shotview in 2001. The idea was to represent photographers who work between art and commerce in order to offer the creative industry a high-class service.
How did the photographers come to your attention?
I knew most of the photographers privately already. They either didn’t yet have a representative agency or wanted to change. That’s how Joachim Baldauf, Peter Rigaud, Erwin Wurm, and Sesse Lind were with us from the beginning. I have never headhunted anyone and I wouldn’t do it in the future either.
How long do you need to decide whether you will represent an artist?
That varies greatly. With some I know immediately that I would like to represent them. With others I follow them for a time to see which direction they are going. The most important thing, however, is that the chemistry fits because only then can you work successfully together long-term.
»It doesn’t always have to be fashion.«Kozva Rigaud
Do you specifically look around for emerging talents?
Yes. We check out independent fashion magazines for young talents a lot and go through galleries and colleges and universities with open eyes. We also look at Internet portfolio websites.
Until now you only represent one art director. Why is that?
It’s important to me that Shotview grows organically. If you undertake to expand, quality must be guaranteed. Additionally we don’t want to compete with advertising agencies in this field. In truth, we offer this service for clients who specifically do not wish to work together with an advertising agency.
How many people work for Shotview?
We currently have six employees in Berlin and a further two in Vienna as well as many freelancers for productions. We’re planning to open an office in Paris at the end of 2013 as we are often there on business anyway.
What is Shotview Vintage all about?
The Vintage side is a limited run of exclusive work from our photographers that mostly originates from personal work. We offer this as strictly limited edition. This side of Shotview is immensely exciting and we have great respect for the photographers and their work.
What are the most common booking inquires you receive?
The majority of inquiries at Shotview are about campaigns in the classical sense. However, there are also many for testimonial shoots, lookbooks, and editorials.
And what has been your most complex production to date?
I’ve been collecting art for years. My husband Peter (a photographer himself) and I, however, purposely didn’t hang any until 18 months ago because we were already so involved with photography for work. But in the meantime we do, although not everything finds a place in our apartment. Instead we have dozens of coffee-table books. Alec Soth, Pieter Hugo, and Diane Arbus are among my favorite artists. It doesn’t always have to be fashion.