In cooperation with the public institution Mekinje Monastery, the U.S. Embassy sponsored a week-long program in Kamnik featuring two acclaimed American artists, Jesse Burke and Manuel Gonzales. Jesse is a photographer whose inspiring work has been featured in galleries across the U.S., and who was included by Time Magazine in the top 50 US photographers to follow on Instagram, and by The New York Times Style Magazine as one of the top 5 to follow on Instagram. He led a spirited discussion on photography as a career, and urged participants to assert themselves through the power of their artistic talent. Kaufman Prize-winning American writer Manuel Gonzales conducted workshops on how to write compelling stories that capture the audience’s imagination. Both artists also enjoyed presenting their portfolios of work to Slovenian audiences. Besides the various educational components, this wide-ranging cultural program also gave people in Kamnik a chance to taste traditional American food. We are thrilled to support projects like this one that emphasize the strength of our cultural connections and help create new linkages between people. The artists will take home a piece of Slovenia through their work: Jesse through hundreds of photographs taken around the country, and Manuel through stories inspired by the rich Slovenian culture and atmosphere.