Archive for Cuba

Colors of Cuba

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on December 13, 2014 by stevemccurry


Cuba is tempting and provocative – full of contradictions
and not always easy to understand.
It is a country full of culture, music, history and passion.
Selected Moments


Prepare yourself to be shocked, perplexed, confounded and amazed.
Cuba is a country with no historical precedents: economically poor, but culturally rich;
visibly mildewed, but architecturally magnificent; infuriating,
yet at the same time, strangely uplifting.
Following quotes by Brendan Sainsbury, Lonely Planet

Retouched by Ekaterina Savtsova 12/12/2014

Retouched by Ekaterina Savtsova 12/11/2014

If the country were a book, it would be James Joyce’s Ulysses;
layered, hard to grasp, serially misunderstood,
but – above all – a classic.

Retouched by Ekaterina Savtsova 12/11/2014

Retouched by Ekaterina Savtsova 12/11/2014


I love Cuba because it’s a forbidden fruit,
a complex country of head-scratching contradictions which,
however many times you visit,
will never adequately answer all your questions.


Most of all I love its musicality, its robust culture,
its wonderfully preserved history …




Rhythms and melodies are ubiquitous in this melting pot of African,
European and Caribbean cultures. 


 Witness them at the opera and at the ballet;
in the corner bar or through the hypnotic drumming of a Santería ceremony;
with the trombonist practicing his arpeggios on the seawall, or in the rhythmic gait
of the people as they saunter along Havana’s musical streets.

Cuba, 2014

_SM15729_adj, Havana, Cuba, 2010, CUBA-00004


_SM18476_adj, Cuba, 2010, LATIN_AMERICA-10145

Retouched by Ekaterina Savtsova 12/11/2014

_DSC6748 (1)

_DSC6998Steve McCurry photographing a man carrying a mirror in Old Havana


Finding the Sublime 
December 16, 2014 – April 2015 
CT Gallery 
112 rue Saint-François 74120 
Megève, France

Iconic Photographs
Bait Al Zubair Museum
Muscat, Oman
Opens December 16, 2014

Steve McCurry Retrospective
Villa Riale di Monza
Monza, Italy
October 30 – April 6, 2015

Retouched by Ekaterina Savtsova 12/11/2014

Cuba, 2014

Threshold of the New

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 19, 2013 by stevemccurry

INDIA-10742NF Maqbool Fida Husain, in his studio
Mumbai, India

Stronger by weakness, wiser men become
As they draw near to their eternal home.
Leaving the old, both worlds at once they view
That stand upon the threshold of the new.
– Edmund Waller


USA-10797United States

The longer I live the more beautiful life becomes. 
– Frank Lloyd Wright

00406_04, 05/2001, TibetTibet

To me, old age is always fifteen years older than I am.
– Francis Bacon

ETHIOPIA-10285Member of the Suri tribe, Ethiopia


As I grow older, I pay less attention to what men say.
I just watch what they do.
Andrew Carnegie

_SM18476_adj, Cuba, 2010, LATIN_AMERICA-10145Cuba

BRAZIL-10030NF2, Lavazza, Brazil, 08/2010,Brazil


Old age, believe me, is a good and pleasant thing.
It is true you are gently shouldered off the stage,
but then you are given such a comfortable front stall as spectator.
– Johann Wolfgang von Goethe



Old age hath yet his honour and his toil.
– Alfred Lord Tennyson

SRILANKA-10086, Sri Lanka, 10/1995Sri Lanka



None are so old as those who have outlived enthusiasm.
– Henry David Thoreau



Youth is the gift of nature, but age is a work of art.
– Garson Kanin 


The years teach much which the days never knew.
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

When Words Fail

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 28, 2013 by stevemccurry

When words fail, music speaks.
– Hans Christian Andersen

FRANCE-10081, Paris, France, Modern , 12/1989 PORTRAITS_APPFrance

Music is the universal language of mankind.
– Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

_2SM7437, Umbria, Italy, 2012, ITALY-10534. A woman sings on the street.Italy

USA-10757Stevie Wonder performing in Los Angeles

Music is the language of the spirit.
It opens the secret of life bringing peace, abolishing strife.
-Khalil Gibran


Music… will help dissolve your perplexities and purify your character and sensibilities ,
and in time of care and sorrow,
will keep a fountain of joy alive in you.
  – Dietrich Bonhoeffer




Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind,
flight to the imagination,
and life to everything.
– Plato

01030_04Dance class in Los Angeles, California

Music . . . can name the unnameable and
communicate the unknowable.

– Leonard Bernstein

USA-10654New Orleans, Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina


I often think in music. I live my daydreams in music.
I see my life in terms of music.

– Albert Einstein


Musicians paint their pictures on silence.
– Leopold Stokowski


Music is the wine that fills the cup of silence.
– Robert Fripp



Snake Charmer, Morocco, 03/1988, MOROCCO-10038Morocco

“Ah, music,” he said, wiping his eyes. “A magic beyond all we do here!”
– J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone



To stop the flow of music would be like the stopping of time itself, incredible and inconceivable.
– Aaron Copland

_SM15545, Havana, Cuba, 2010, CUBA-10020Cuba


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Silent Language of Hands

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 6, 2013 by stevemccurry


Behold the hands
how they promise, conjure, appeal, menace, pray, supplicate, 

refuse, beckon, interrogate, admire, confess, cringe, instruct, command, 
mock and what not besides, with a variation and multiplication of
variation which makes the tongue envious.
– Michel de Montaigne


Sharbat Gula, Nasir Bagh Refugee Camp, Peshawar, Pakistan




Our hands often reveal what we really think but do not say.
They can show a range of feelings and emotions from confusion and frustration
to joy, understanding, love, and compassion. 



Among all species, our human hands are unique — not only in what they can accomplish,
but also in how they communicate. Human hands can paint the Sistine Chapel, pluck a guitar,
maneuver surgical instruments, chisel a David, forge steel, and write poetry.
They can grasp, scratch, poke, punch, feel, sense, evaluate, hold and mold the world around us.
– Joe Navarro


Florida, United States



New York City, United States

When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives means the most to us,
we often find that it is those who, instead of giving advice, solutions,or cures,
 have chosen rather to share our pain
 and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand.
– Henri Nouwen



Let us touch the dying, the poor, the lonely and the unwanted
according to the graces we 
have received and
let us not be ashamed or slow to do the humble work.
– Mother Teresa



Hands calm us, feed us, and scratch our backs.
They intimidate, bless, encourage, and stop us.  They soothe and caress.
They draw our attention to the good and the bad, often suggesting exuberance or fear.
– Charles Flowers introduction to Elliott Erwitt’s Handbook









Hands have saved lives and taken them just as easily.
They create the saviors of life as well as the purveyors of death.
Creating and destroying with a single move
a finger can move mountains or search the unknown heavens.
Hands live to caress and love.
Hands live to fight and die.
Forever living hands, forever exploring hands.
– Bruce Alan Humphrey



To receive everything, one must open one’s hands and give.
– Taisen Deshimaru



Your hand opens and closes, opens and closes.
Your deepest presence is in every small contracting and expanding, the two as
beautifully balanced and coordinated as birds’ wings.
– Rumi ( 1207 – 1273)






Hold a true friend with both hands
– African Proverb



To pray means to open your hands before God.
– Henri Nouwen


United States



Kunar Province, Afghanistan

Kunar Province, Afghanistan



The hands which beckon,
embrace, soothe, and comfort us
Bid us farewell.

00443_14; 00443_ 010; Uganda; Africa; 2001;


…For saints have hands that pilgrims’ hands do touch, And palm to palm is holy palmers’ kiss.
Romeo and Juliet, Act I, Scene 5
-William Shakespeare




The Greatest Good

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 19, 2012 by stevemccurry


The greatest good that mortals know
and all of heaven we have below.
– Joseph Addison


Rocca Paolina, Perugia, Umbria, Italy 


Chitral, Pakistan

Karabash-i Veli,  Bursa, Turkey

Street Musician, Dublin, Ireland 


La Habana Vieja, Cuba

Music is the shorthand of emotion.
– Leo Tolstoy

A family plays music on the street hoping for a few rupees, India

Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.
– Berthold Auerbach

Angkor Wat temple complex, Cambodia

Two musicians practice for the Jazz Festival, Perugia, Italy

Music’s the medicine of the mind. 
– John A. Logan


Music . . . can name the unnameable and communicate the unknowable.
– Leonard Bernstein


Herbie Hancock, Italy
Winner of 14 Grammy Awards, Hancock is a musical icon.

 Kalash Girl, Chitral District of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Province, Pakistan

 When words leave off, music begins.
– Heinrich Heine

Khan Murjan restaurant in a 14th century building which
served as an inn for travellers and traders.  Baghdad, Iraq

Whiskey a Go Go, a fixture on the Sunset Strip, Los Angeles, California, United States

Pianist waits to perform in a supper club, Shanghai, China

Alto Churumazu, Peru

 Music is the literature of the heart; it commences where speech ends.
– Alphonse de Lamartine

Marrakesh, Morocco

Traditional performers,  Tashkent, Uzbekistan

Music, once admitted to the soul, becomes a sort of spirit, and never dies.

Edward George Bulwer-Lytton

Sunset Boulevard, Los Angeles, California

Whatever deceptions life may have in store for you,
music itself is not going to let you down.

– Virgil Thomson, Composer, Winner of the Pulitzer Price, 1949

Karabash-i Veli,  Bursa, Turkey

Ah, music. A magic beyond all we do here!
– J. K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

Seal  greets Steve McCurry at concert, PhotoKina,Cologne, Germany
Courtesy of Matthias Krug,  September 17, 2012


Oeksnehallen, Copenhagen, Denmark – Ongoing
Gallery N, Seoul Arts Centre, Seoul, South Korea – Opening on September 12th, 2012
Leica Photokina, Hall 1, Cologne, Germany – September 18, 2012
Centro Municipal de Arte Helio Oiticica, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – October 6th, 2012
Plazzo Ducale, Genova, Italy – October 17, 2012
Annenberg Space for Photography, Los Angeles – November 15, 2012
Chris Beetles Gallery, London, U.K. – January 15, 2013
Kunstmuseum-Wolfsburg, Germany – January 19, 2013
Cavalier Gallery, Greenwich, CT – April 12 – May 6, 2013
Kunsthalle Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland – June 1, 2013

To Fly

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 8, 2012 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

Aung San Suu Kyi, Burma, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991

Books are the plane, and the train, and the road.
They are the destination, and the journey.
They are home.
– Anna Quindlen



Reading is everything. Reading makes me feel like I’ve accomplished something,
learned something, become a better person.
Reading makes me smarter. Reading gives me something to talk about later on…
Reading is grist. Reading is bliss.
– Nora Ephron


Everywhere I go in the world, I see young and old, rich and poor, reading books.  

Whether readers are engaged in the sacred or the secular, they are, for a time,
transported to  another world.



Reading a good book is a universal activity, and people read while they do
just about everything else, and that includes reading while playing the
piano, which my sister used to do.

Sri Lanka

At one magical instant in your early childhood,
the page of a book–that string of confused, alien ciphers–shivered into meaning.
Words spoke to you, gave up their secrets; at that moment, whole universes opened.
You became, irrevocably, a reader.
– Alberto Manguel


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

Lourdes, France

Books are the quietest and most constant of friends;

they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the
most patient of teachers. 
– Charles William Eliot


Books are the bees which carry the quickening pollen from one to another mind.
– James Russell Lowell


We read to know we are not alone. 
– C.S. Lewis


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


Books, I found, had the power to make time stand still,
retreat or fly into the future.
– Jim Bishop


That’s what I love about reading: one tiny thing will interest you in a book,

and that tiny thing will lead you to another book, and another bit there will
lead you onto a third book. It’s geometrically progressive
– all with no end in sight, and for no other reason than sheer enjoyment.
― Mary Ann Shaffer, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society




We live for books.
-Umberto Eco, The Name of the Rose 




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



I’m old-fashioned and think that reading books is the
most glorious pastime that humankind has yet devised.
– Wisława Szymborska
1996 Nobel Prize in Literature




The reading of all good books is like a conversation with the finest minds of past centuries.
– Rene Descartes

It Takes Two

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 12, 2012 by stevemccurry

 Here are some pictures of couples all over
the world who have a relationship that is
evident in their gestures of caring, their body
language, their eyes.



If we are a metaphor of the universe,
the human couple is the metaphor par excellence,
the point of intersection of all forces and the seed of all forms.
The couple is time recaptured, the return to the time before time.
– Octavio Paz, Mexico, Nobel Laureate in Literature


Havana, Cuba



A4487718, THAILAND-10041NF, Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai, Thailand


Venice, Italy

What is essential is invisible to the eye.
 – Antoine de Saint-Exupéry


Rome, Italy

Grow old along with me.
The best is yet to be, the last of life,
for which the first was made.
Our times are in his hand who saith,
A whole I planned, youth shows but half;
Trust God: See all, nor be afraid!
– Robert Browning





New York City


Bamiyan Province, Afghanistan

Life has taught us that love does not
consist in gazing at each other but in looking outward
together in the same direction.
-Antoine de Saint-Exupéry,
Wind, Sand, and Stars


Tagong, Tibet

Take away love and our earth is a tomb.
– Robert Browning


Gostivar, Macedonia



Agra, India

The heart has its reasons that reason knows nothing of. 
– Blaise Pascal, Pensées, 1670



To love someone deeply gives you strength.
Being loved by someone  deeply gives you courage.
– Lao-Tzu


Sanaa, Yemen



Dublin, Ireland



Belgrade, Serbia

One word frees us of all the weight and pain in life.
That word is love.
– Sophocles


Rome, Italy



Istanbul, Turkey





Rome, Italy

The couple is time recaptured, the return to the time before time.
– Octavio Paz, Mexico, Nobel Laureate in Literature


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