Faces of Afghanistan

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 2, 2014 by stevemccurry

“A landscape might be denuded,
a human settlement abandoned or lost,
but always,
just beneath the ground lies history of preposterous grandeur. . .
They are everywhere, these individuals of undaunted
humankind, irrepressibly optimistic and proud.”
-  The Carpet Wars, Christopher Kremmer

_PBS6026_es (1)Kabul

AFGHN-10223Herat

01803_02_es_blogKabul

AFGHN-12331NF (1)Panjshir Valley

Yet even at their most turbulent, the Afghans have tended to impress
travellers with
their dignity and hospitality as much as their fierce independence.
- William Dalrymple,  author of Return of a King: The Battle for Afghanistan 1839–42

AFGHN-12691NF2 (1)Kabul

AFGHN-10211Charikar

AFGHN-12329Bamiyan

God must have loved Afghans because he made them so beautiful.
- Unknown

PAKISTAN-10003Peshawar, Pakistan Afghan refugee 

AFGHN-13164Kabul

AFGHN-12906Bamiyan

AFGHN-13831Bamiyan

AFGHN-12244NF (2)Kunduz

AFGHN-12316Pul-e-Khumri

In Afghanistan, you don’t understand yourself solely as an individual.
You understand yourself as a son, a brother, a cousin to somebody, an uncle to somebody.
You are part of something bigger than yourself.
- Khaled Hosseini

AFGHN-13903Bamiyan

AFGHN-13899Kabul

AFGHN-10242 (1)Kandahar

AFGHN-10143NFPul-e-Khumri

AFGHN-12232Kabul

AFGHN-10060, Pul-i-Khumri, Afghanistan, 1992. A bandaged wounded boy.Pul-e-Khumri

AFGHN-12092Ghazni

AFGHN-12772Bamiyan

AFGHN-12355Kabul

A French man who worked for the ICRC had been to inspect one of Kabul’s
prisons to
check on the conditions of the prisoners.
After their names had all been verified, he noticed a door which had remained unopened for the inspection. 

The prison guard had been reluctant to open it;
behind it was just an old man in solitary confinement, he had said.
But it was the man’s job to count the prisoners, and he insisted on being shown inside.

When the door was open, he caught sight of a half-naked old man in the freezing and windowless cell.
The old man had tottered to his feet, lifted the scrap of cloth on which he sat,
brushed the dust from it and stepped back, smiling, to offer the space to his guest.
- Jason Elliott, An Unexpected Light

AFGHN-12201NF4Kabul

Beetles & Huxley Gallery
Afghanistan
London, UK
12 May through 7 June 2014

To Read is to Fly

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 24, 2014 by stevemccurry

“To read is to fly: it is to soar to a point of vantage which
gives a view over wide terrains of history, human variety,
ideas, shared experience and the fruits of many inquiries.”
 – A C Grayling, Financial Times
(in a review of A History of Reading by Alberto Manguel)

DSC_2998_esBrazil

I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library.
- Jorge Luis Borges

TURKEY-10212Turkey

There is no frigate like a book 
To take us lands away, 
Nor any coursers like a page 
Of prancing poetry. 
This traverse may the poorest take 
Without oppress of toll;
How frugal is the chariot 
That bears a human soul.
- Emily Dickinson

DSC_8680_esLondon, United Kingdom

01734_06_esShanghai, China

_SM17860_adj; Havana, Cuba; 2010, CUBA-00018 Cuba

00038_18, Serbia, Yugoslavia, 11/1989, YUGOSLAVIA-10127.Serbia

BURMA-10711Burma

We read to know we’re not alone.
-  C.S. Lewis

USA-10880United States

DSC_3030_esCape Town, South Africa

ETHIOPIA-10221Ethiopia

India, November 2007,India

BRAZIL-10103Brazil

When I get a little money I buy books;
and if any is left I buy food and clothes.

- Erasmus

THAILAND-10147Chiang Mai, Thailand

I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading!
How much sooner one tires of any thing than of a book!
 When I have a house of my own,
I shall be miserable if I have not an excellent library.
-  Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

_SM17695; Italy; 07/2011, ITALY-10289Italy

00703_20, CANADA-10007, Nova Scotia, Footsteps of Buddha, 06/2005France

The ability to read awoke inside me some
long dormant craving to be mentally alive.

Autobiography of Malcolm X

NEPAL-10108Nepal

Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed,
and some few are to be chewed and digested.
- Francis Bacon

UNITED_ARAB_EMIRATES-10005United Arab Emirates

To learn to read is to light a fire;
every syllable that is spelled out is a spark. 

– Victor Hugo

BURMA-10597NFBurma

Reading is the sole means by which we slip, involuntarily,
often helplessly, into another’s skin, another’s voice, another’s soul.
- Joyce Carol Oates

_SM11134, Chiang Mai, Thailand, 2011, THAILAND-10066 final print_MACROChiang Mai, Thailand

Reading was my escape and my comfort,
my consolation, my stimulant of choice: reading for the pure pleasure of it,
for the beautiful stillness that surrounds you when you hear an
author’s words reverberating in your head.
– Paul Auster, The Brooklyn Follies

00939_16_es (1)Cambodia

MALAYSIA-10018Malaysia

USA-10821Renowned author, Paul Theroux, Hot Springs, Arkansas

SOUTH_AFRICA-10003NF_webSouth Africa

Beetles & Huxley Gallery
Afghanistan
London, UK
12 May through 7 June 2014

Alex Del Piero Gallery
Power of Ten

Torino, Italy
16 May through 31 August 2014

POWER OF PLACE

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on April 16, 2014 by stevemccurry

Geography holds billions of people in its grip.
We are all born into natural and cultural environments
that shape what we become, individually and collectively.
- Harm de Blij, The Power of Place:
Geography, Destiny, and Globalization’s Rough Landscape

INDIA-12211Rajasthan, India

 From our “mother tongue” to our father’s faith, 
from medical risks to natural hazards,
where we start our journey has much to do with our future.
op cit

ITALY-10481Camino, Italy

00214_ 006Mosque in Mazar-e-Sharif, Afghanistan

Where you live determines how you live.

USA-10872Georgia, United States

In literature, setting (where and when the story takes place)
is determanitive of conflict and plot.

USA-10654New Orleans, Louisiana, United States

KUWAIT-10037Kuwait

AFGHN-12344NFKabul, Afghanistan

CAMBODIA-10270Dith Pran, journalist and survivor of the genocide in Cambodia, coined the term “Killing Fields”

FRANCE-10019, Père Lachaise Cemetery, France, Political, 08/1988Père Lachaise Cemetery, Paris, France
Resting place of Frederic Chopin, Oscar Wilde, Jim Morrison, and hundreds more.

YEMEN-10048, Safan, Yemen, 1999.Yemen

Street scene, Calcutta, India, 1996Kolkata, India

HONDURAS-10006NF3 (1)Honduras

Place is a powerful arbitrator. 
- Ibid

RUSSIA-10069NFKarelia, Russia

 Where you are born–what you are born into,
the place, the history of the place, how that history mates with your own, 
stamps who you are, whatever the pundits of globalisation have to say.
 – Jeanette Winterson

JAPAN-10026Tokyo, Japan

MALI-10033Mali

BURMA-10276, Myanmar, Burma, 02/2011Burma

USA-10910Elberton, Georgia, United States

_SM11420, Chiang-Mai, Thailand, 2011, THAILAND-10087Chiang Mai, Thailand

USA-10915United States

LEBANON-10086Lebanon

ETHIOPIA-10231Ethiopia

AFGHN-10037NFHerat, Afghanistan

Upcoming Exhibitions

Beetles & Huxley Gallery
London, UK
12 May through 7 June 2014

Alex Del Piero Gallery
Torino, Italy
16 May through 31 August 2014

One Step at a Time

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 2, 2014 by stevemccurry

One step at a time is good walking.
- Chinese proverb

INDIA-10640India

Walking shares with making and working that
crucial element of engagement of the body and the mind with the world,
of knowing the world through the body and the body through the world.
- Rebecca Solnit, Wanderlust: A History of Walking

ITALY-10077Italy

UnitedKingdom-10018_blogUnited Kingdom

There is nothing like walking to get the feel of a country. 
A fine landscape is like a piece of music; it must be taken at the right tempo. 
- Paul Scott Mowrer

NEPAL-10029NF2Nepal

TIBET-10253NF2Tibet

FRANCE-10072France

 Solvitur ambulando
(To solve a problem, walk around)
- St. Jerome

YEMEN-10117, Yemen, 04/1997Yemen

AFGHN-12960Afghanistan

How often have I had this longing for an infinite walk – of going unimpeded,
until the movement of my body as I walk fell into the flight of
streets under my feet – 
until I in my body and the world in its
skin of earth were blended into a single act of knowing.

- Alfred Kazin, The Open Street

BANGLADESH-10002Bangladesh

01585_20_esFrance

CAMBODIA-10089Cambodia

In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks.
- John Muir

ITALY-10486Italy

All truly great thoughts are conceived by walking.
- Friedrich Nietzche

01006_13_blogItaly

If you are seeking creative ideas, go out walking
Angels whisper to those who walk
- Raymond Inmon

DSC_3176_esBrazil

IRELAND-10001 Ireland

 Above all, do not lose your desire to walk.
Every day I walk myself into a state of well-being …
I have walked myself into my best thoughts,
and I know of no thought so burdensome that
one cannot walk away from it.
- Soren Kierkegaard

BURMA-10564 Burma

Walking is a man’s best medicine.
-Hippocrates

BURMA-10091NFBurma

With beauty before me, may I walk
With beauty behind me, may I walk
With beauty above me, may I walk
With beauty below me, may I walk
With beauty all around me, may I walk
Wandering on the trail of beauty, may I walk
Navajo: Walking Meditation

FRANCE-10056, Lourdes, France, 1988 France

  Walking is the great adventure,
the first meditation, a practice of heartiness and
soul primary to humankind.
Walking is the exact balance between spirit and humility.
- Gary Snyder

BRAZIL-10065Rio de Janeiro,Brazil

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Horses and Humans

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 24, 2014 by stevemccurry

COLOMBIA-10001 (2)Colombia

They gallop and trot, whinny and neigh, capturing our imagination — and our hearts.
Indeed, horses are said to have done more to change human history than any
other domestic animal,
once upon a time carrying explorers to
new frontiers and mighty armies to great conquests.
- Nature,  PBS

TIBET-10510Tibet

When I bestride him, I soar, I am a hawk:
he trots the air; the earth sings when he touches it;

the basest horn of his hoof is more
musical than the pipe of Hermes.

- William Shakespeare, Henry V

Kabul Survey TripAfghanistan

TIBET-10105nsTibet

There is something about the outside of a horse
that is good for the inside of a man.
- Winston Churchill

AFGHN-12254NFAfghanistan

A horse! a horse! My kingdom for a horse!
-William Shakespeare, Richard III

01025_20, Paraguay, 10/1988Paraguay

A horse gallops with his lungs,
Perseveres with his heart,
And wins with his character.
- Fredrico Tesio

CAMBODIA-10085Cambodia

01110_18; Lahore; Pakistan; 04/1983, PAKISTAN-10097Pakistan

BURMA-10391, Burma, 02/2011Burma

A horse is worth more than riches.
– Spanish Proverb

_DSC7490, Lombari, Brazil, 2010, BRAZIL-10011NF9Brazil

00010_05, USA-10208, Lancaster, Pennsylvania, USA,United States

ITALY-10591NF2 (1)Italy

AFGHN-12834 (2)Pakistan

00635_04, Lavazza, Honduras, 2004, HONDURAS-10018NF3Honduras

ITALY-10531Italy

There is no secret so close as that between a rider and his horse.
- Robert Smith Surtees

NEPAL-10060Nepal

Somewhere in time’s own space
There must be some sweet pastured place
Where creeks sing on and tall trees grow
Some paradise where horses go,
For by the love that guides my pen
I know great horses live again.
- Stanley Harrison

BURMA-10716NF2Burma

00510_11retouched_KateDaigneault 09/11/2013Morocco

And Allah took a handful of southerly wind,
blew His breath over it, and created the horse.
Thou shall fly without wings, and conquer without any sword.
- Bedouin Legend

AFGHN-10153Afghanistan

In riding horses we borrow freedom.
-Helen Thompson

KASHMIR-10079NFKashmir

USA-10387, Texas; USA; 2006; PORTRAITS_APPUnited States

 

00512_02; Baluchistan; Pakistan; 03/1981; BIO-10274NF2Steve McCurry in Baluchistan, Pakistan

Current Exhibitions
Kunsthalle Erfurt, Germany

Juminkeko Foundation
Kuhmo, Finland

Upcoming Exhibitions

Alex Del Piero Gallery
Torino, Italy
16 May 2014 through 31 August 2014

Beetles & Huxley Gallery
London, UK
May 12 through June 7, 2014

Frederic Got Fine Art Gallery
France
June 2014

Theatre de la Photography et de l’Image
Nice, France
27 June 2014 through 28 September 2014

01006_13_blogItaly

Reflections on Portraiture

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on March 12, 2014 by stevemccurry

 What could be more simple and more complex,
more obvious and more profound than a portrait.
- Charles Baudelaire 

ETHIOPIA-10319Ethiopia

Los Angeles, California, USA, 1991, USA-10023Portraits_BookPORTRAITS_BookLos Angeles, California, United States

As human beings we are fascinated with how we and others look.
Diane Arbus talked about the gap between intention and effect as revealed in portraiture.
People put on make-up and adorn themselves because they want to create an effect and
give a certain impression, but often other people look at them and say it’s tragic or comical or curious or funny or odd.
Portraiture can be that kind of sharp critique.

ITALY-10427NF2Italy

00008_11, Kabul, Afghanistan, 2002Kabul, Afghanistan

A good portrait is one that says something about the person. 
We usually see parts of ourselves in others, so the
good portrait should also say something about the human condition.

01512 031Mizoram, India

TIBET-10605NFTibet

Most of my portraits are not formal situations;
they are found situations. 

Restaurant, Kunduz, Afghanistan, 2002, final book_iconicBamiyan, Afghanistan

The countenance is the portrait of the soul, and
the eyes mark its intentions.
- Marcus Tullius Cicero

VIETNAM-10004Vietnam

INDIA-10582NFIndia

TIBET-10663Tibet

There is no single form or style of portraiture.
Portraiture means individualism and as such means diversity,
self-expression, private point of view.

The most successful images seem to be those which exist on several planes at once …
- Peter Bunnell

INDIA-11771NFIndia

ETHIOPIA-10235 (1)Ethiopia

A true portrait should today and a hundred years from today, be the
testimony of how this person looked and what kind of human being he was.
– 
 Philippe Halsman

AFGHN-13027Afghanistan

BURMA-10410Burma

BANGLADESH-10020Bangladesh

YEMEN-10004NFYemen

INDIA-11525 (1)India

Photography and the genre of portraiture have enjoyed a long and fruitful relationship.
From the beginning of depiction, the portrait has invited its audience to recognize the
identity of the subject and then to remember.
- Anthony Bannon

ETHIOPIA-10304Ethiopia

Portraits reveal a desire for human connection;
a desire so strong that people who know they will never see me again

open themselves to the camera,  all in the hope that at the other end
someone will be watching,

someone who will laugh or suffer with them.

AFGHN-10211Afghanistan

The most difficult thing for me is a portrait. You have to try and
put your camera between the skin of a person and his shirt.
- Henri Cartier-Bresson

FRANCE-10028, France, 1989France

Upcoming Exhibitions

Alex Del Piero Gallery
Torino, Italy
16 May 2014 through 31 August 2014

Juminkeko Foundation
Kuhmo, Finland
21 March 2014 through 6 June 2014

 Beetles & Huxley Gallery
London, UK
 May 2014

Frederic Got Fine Art Gallery
Paris, France
May 2014

Theatre de la Photography et de l’Image
Nice, France
27 June 2014 through 28 September 2014

Children of the Omo

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on February 24, 2014 by stevemccurry

ETHIOPIA-10227Surma tribe, Omo Valley, Ethiopia

The Omo River Valley is located in Southwest Ethiopia.
It has been called “the last frontier” in Africa. 

ETHIOPIA-10341NF (1)Kara tribe

There are nine main tribes that occupy the Omo River Valley,
with a population of approximately 225,000 tribal peoples. 

The majority of the people living in the Omo River Valley
live without clean drinking water and without medical care.

ETHIOPIA-10060Surma tribe

It has been a privilege to go back to the Omo Valley in Ethiopia
with my friend, John Rowe, to photograph 
the work he is doing with Lale Labuko
in their mission to end the practice of mingi and to house 
and
shelter the mingi children who have already been rescued.

ETHIOPIA-10105Lale Labuko

Lale,  a 2013 National Geographic Emerging Explorer, 
learned about the practice of Mingi and made it his life’s
mission to end ritual infanticide in his tribe’s culture.

http://omochild.org/videos/lale-labukos-story

ETHIOPIA-10306Surma tribe

Mingi is the ritualistic killing of infants and children who are Mingi 
because they are considered impure or cursed.
A child can be mingi for many reasons, 
but once they are mingi they are
left alone in the desert without food and water or drowned in a river.

ETHIOPIA-10039John Rowe and Friends

I met John in Burma. He is a photographer and
successful businessman 
who has founded companies
which develop software for digital media and the entertainment
industry.  
He has also devoted a tremendous amount of time, energy, and
financial assistance to the work of Omo Child.

ETHIOPIA-10248NFKara tribe

ETHIOPIA-10247Kara tribe

The hope is that the rescued children will be future leaders in their communities and
will help raise awareness to help advocate the ending of the tribal practice of mingi.

ETHIOPIA-10277Hamer tribe

To learn more about Lale and John and OmoChild, please visit:
http://omochild.org/

ETHIOPIA-10153Kara tribe

ETHIOPIA-10331Surma tribe

ETHIOPIA-10281NFSurma tribe

ETHIOPIA-10243Surma tribe

ETHIOPIA-10221Surma tribe

ETHIOPIA-10235Surma tribe

BIO-10518NFSteve McCurry with members of the Surma tribe

ETHIOPIA-10151NFKara tribe

ETHIOPIA-10136 (1)Kara Tribe

ETHIOPIA-10152

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