Steve McCurry
Magnum photographer Steve McCurry (USA, 1950) needs little introduction as his name is implicitly linked with his iconic image ‘The Afghan Girl’ which covered the National Geographic Magazine in 1985. Nevertheless his career spans over more than three decades, conceived in six continents and mainly focused on the human condition. From this huge body of work an exquisite selection will be featured during the show.

His career began in the early eighties when he made a trip to India and after several months of travel, disguised in native clothing, crossed the border into Pakistan and further on into Afghanistan during the Russian invasion. Afghanistan was closed for all Western journalists, but McCurry managed to provide the West the first images of the conflict. In 1984 he encountered ‘the Afghan Girl’, with the piercing green eyes and the haunting gaze, later identified as Sharbat Gula. Apart from being published on the cover of the National Geographic Magazine, the portrait was subsequently used during several Amnesty International campaigns. This famous silhouette, one of the numerous striking images of his career, won several photographic awards and helped McCurry to become a member of the Magnum Photos Agency.

His photographic oeuvre covers historic conflicts and personal human encounters during his travels of the past three decades, to name a few: the Soviet war, the Iran-Iraq war, the Gulf war, the disintegration of Yugoslavia, Beirut, the Philippines, Cambodia and New York after September 11.

His crystal clear and colorful compositions from all over the globe are instantly recognizable and some of them are pierced in our Western minds. McCurry describes his own work as following: “Most of my images are grounded in people. I look for the unguarded moment, the essential soul peeking out, experience etched on a person’s face. I try to convey what it is like to be that person.”
His intense use of color, the ability to capture the natural light and the human subject at the decisive moment and his compositions, characterize his photographic style.

Steve McCurry is considered as being one of the most renowned contemporary photojournalists and on his behalf countless exhibitions and publications are conducted worldwide. Some notable awards in the industry are assigned to him. Recently he received the prestigious French award the ‘Chevalier’ of the ‘Ordre des Arts et des Lettres’, given as recognition for his distinguished artistic achievement.

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