Child’s Play


Child’s play is the exultation of the possible.
– Martin Buber



Children at play are not playing about.
Their games should be seen as their most serious minded activity.
– Michel de Montaigne


Play is the highest form of research.
– Albert Einstein


Man is most nearly himself when
he achieves the seriousness of a child at play.
– Heraclitus

INDIA-11310, India, 2010, A young girl in India. Retouched_Sonny FabbriIndia

Time is a game played beautifully by children.
– Heraclitus, Fragments


HONDURAS-10027, La Fortuna, Honduras, 2004,Honduras

Deep meaning lies often in childish play.
– Johann Friedrich von Schiller

USA-10687 United States 


No matter how dire the situation, how dangerous the environment,
children need to play.
Whether it is splashing in puddles or climbing on abandoned tanks,
their world of make believe is almost as important as food and shelter.



The true object of all human life is play.
– G. K. Chesterton

MALI-10010NF, Sahel Desert, Mali, 1986 final print_milanMali

INDIA-10727Mumbai, India

Whoever wants to understand much must play much.
– Gottfried Benn


People tend to forget that play is serious.
– David Hockney

HONDURAS-10010_JM Honduras


We don’t stop playing because we grow old;
we grow old because we stop playing.
– George Bernard Shaw


AUSTRALIA-10008, Maningrida, Australia, 1984Australia


Current Museum Exhibitions
Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe Hamburg, Germany
Santa Maria della Scala Siena, Italy
Fundacion ITAU, Santiago, Chile

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97 Responses to “Child’s Play”

  1. Reblogged this on Simona Prilogan and commented:
    “Play is the highest form of research” (A. Einstein)
    Wonderful collection of photos! Thanks Steve for sharing!

  2. Absolutely wonderful images!

  3. Today, I spent the whole evening looking at those pictures especially “Child’s Play” and the captions taken from famous writers. But, felt quite sad to see there was no captions taken from Rabindranath Tagore’s “The Crescent Moon”. Perhaps you might not have heard about him. He obtained ‘Nobel Price for Literature’ in 1913.

  4. I’ve just written a paper about the importance of play in cogitative development…you illustrated it just now with your beautiful photos! I absolutely adored this post, thank you!

  5. Gireesh GV Says:

    Always an inspiration. You are my great teacher since 1987

  6. Reblogged this on Kunkana.

  7. Angela M. Gallo Says:

    serie niños jugando, espectacular!

  8. […] blog post was inspired by two of Steve McCurry’s blog entries Child’s Play and Power of […]

  9. Master works are speechless

  10. Love these photos! Especially the one from Mali – so real, so true….

  11. Absolute, great set of the photos!

  12. […] "Children at play are not playing about. Their games should be seen as their most serious minded activity." – Michel de Montaigne  […]

  13. blackbirdnath Says:

    Reblogged this on Blackbird singing and commented:
    We don’t stop playing because we grow old;
    we grow old because we stop playing.
    – George Bernard Shaw

  14. […] Image from Child’s Play by Steve McCurry […]

  15. Steve- First I’m amazed how you put these themed catalogue of images together! Every image is a stand alone masterpiece of the human spirit. Thank you for inspiring us and as a photographer, pushing me forward in a endless quest to improve my craft.

  16. […] Steven Curry’s swell photo essay, Child’s Play is truly an ‘exultation of the possible’ —uninhibitedly improvised toys and games. […]

  17. Very nice photographs, brings back so many old memories

  18. AkbarMangad Says:

    Amazing!!!!!!!! Mr Steve you are India popular artist RAJA RAVIVARMA

  19. I get so much out of your work…it is just so insightful….I dont s’ pose you are exhibiting somewhere in Oz any time soon….? When I grow up (already) I’d like to think I could follow in your footsteps : ) trees

  20. […] Burma Child’s play is the exultation of the possible. – Martin Buber Bangladesh Cambodia Children at play are not playing about. Their games should be seen as their most serious minded activity. – …  […]

  21. Sutapa Sen Says:

    just loved each and every pic! You are really a blessed soul.

  22. Children are children, wherever they are born. Such a celebratory post, if poignant at times. Thank you for sharing.

  23. Reminded me of my childhood, amazing photos as always

  24. So incredibly inspiring, I’m in awe every time I look at your work.

  25. Anonymous Says:

    Steve, I wish one day my eyes could see what your eyes have seen and been able to capture in its best moment.
    Thank you for letting me sink into another world every time I admire one photo:)

  26. Thank you, Steve!!!!

  27. SisterSimon Says:

    Play is the prayer of joy.
    Thank you for the wonderful images!

  28. Anonymous Says:

    gran bel lavoro, complimenti

  29. Rita Flores Says:

    Thanks for share this amaizing photos, I love your work and I admire you a lot.
    My respects for you :)

  30. the images and the quotations just compliment each other. RESPECT.

  31. Maria do Céu Says:

    Amazing photos!!! Childrens are all the same, no matter where we are…

  32. Child ‘plays.
    …yes it’s very happy time.
    Almost parents will be happy to see their children play because it have to show that they are good health… and normal life.
    Thank you photographer Steve McCurry for seeing children around the world and images of my childhood….!

  33. Excellent portfolio Steve.. Congrats..

  34. Wow. It’s really great that you’ve stepped into a few South-East Asia countries and managed to take such amazing photos. Big twinkling star for you and the cute kids .

  35. Reblogged this on The Thinkeist and commented:
    Children playing – a beautiful series of pictures by Steve McCurry

  36. Made me happy just looking at the photos. Thank you.

  37. Brilliant shots. The one from Mali is my favourite. You don’t need much to have fun.

  38. Reblogga detta på Ord i Bild and commented:
    Add your thoughts here… (optional)

  39. As always, your pictures amazed me once again….

  40. Ainun Anin Says:

    Thank you Steve, you give us many stories through the your photo submissions, I am very grateful. God bless you

  41. Being like a child but not childish…

  42. Love your photo series

  43. Thank you for the beautiful reminder sir.

  44. Play is our thank you to God for the gift of life.

  45. Just breathtaking and inspiring, as usual. Merci, Steve!

  46. The reason I took up photography.

  47. patd5104 Says:

    Especially loved the one with the little boy making a funny face directly at the camera, with the younger child watching in fascination in the background. Afghanistan.

  48. Anonymous Says:

    Mahalo!I’m going to play!

  49. Beautiful pictures, beautiful feelings procured, as always steve. If one day I get better in photography, these are the feelings I want to feel looking at my work. Thank you for making me feel alive looking at your work… Thank you to set me a goal!

  50. Lovely picture as always – but, it feels sad to see how unfair the world is from the very beginning of our life!

  51. Absolutely stunning photos! And what a great subject!

  52. Love these pictures! Is there any way to buy these prints?

  53. Lidia Rojas Says:


  54. Anonymous Says:

    not possible to explain the beauty of WORKS, Amazing work by great Photographer

  55. ❤ Absolutely stunning

  56. Anonymous Says:


  57. Thank you for the lovely photographs Steve.

  58. Stunning photos, looking forward to the next post already.

  59. Joy de vive and innocence at its best. loved every picture…

  60. Dane Coffman Says:

    Thank YOU, stunning album, play and laugh as children.

  61. Wonderful as always; thanks!

  62. acassiere Says:

    Pour mon chri ador depuis mon Mac a crit :

    > >

  63. You really capture different moments! You can almost hear, touch and smell the surroundings!

  64. Reblogged this on Caixa Negra and commented:
    Add your thoughts here… (optional)

  65. Wonderful photo’s, thank you,, yet so many many families in the Western world will spend million and millions s of dollars on their children this Christmas, on toys/games that will be forgotten, eventually thrown away.
    The simplicity of these photo’s – children smiling, making up their own games.

  66. Reblogged this on Graffox.

  67. Very very good

  68. Amazing photos as always! the best.

  69. Great photos showing kids having a fun and great time!

  70. scottmathe Says:


  71. Door-Elske Cazemier Says:

    beautiful, reminds me of my childhood, but also of the importance of giving children chances for life!! Let them play!

  72. Anonymous Says:

    Just Fantastic. Amazing Pictures!!!!!!!

  73. Anonymous Says:

    magnifico! saludos desde Paraguay!

  74. My love of photography has found its form on your photos Steve.. Thank you for that! Not sure if I will ever be any professional on that but I think I know what I am doing now..Namaste

  75. Jill Riley Says:

    Thank you for this reminder of children all over the world and the importance of play….

  76. A joyful post, Steve. Fantastic images and inspiring theme. Thank you.

  77. Incredible series, as always! Kids’ joy is universal around the World.

  78. There are 3/4 shots I really loved. Congrats!!!

  79. Anonymous Says:


  80. Beautiful

  81. Reblogged this on Laqui Moreno and commented:
    Aquí dejo el blog de unos mis fotógrafos favoritos, Steve McCurry, con un tema dedicado exclusivamente al juego de los niños. No sé si tengo más envidia de las fotos que hace, o de los sitios que ha viajado…

  82. marcela pacheco Says:

    So nice!

  83. Nice! Lovely series! 👍👏

  84. Bernie DeKoven Says:

    Reblogged this on Bernie DeKoven's Blog and commented:
    Steve McCurry is one of my favorite photographers. His art brings very human beauty, very beautifully. This post is devoted to children at play. And through it, we celebrate it.

  85. Reblogueó esto en LeoAr Photography / Lex Ariasy comentado:
    Add your thoughts here… (optional)

  86. lovely series! Compliments.

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