Archive for Langston Hughes

Wall to Wall

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on September 4, 2012 by stevemccurry


Omo Valley, Ethiopia

Home is any four walls that enclose the right person.
– Helen Rowland

Karelia, Russia


Walls e
nclose us, exclude us
Keep us in, keep us out
Give testimony, bear witness
I was here.


My dark hands!
Break through the wall!
Find my dream!
Help me to shatter this darkness,
To smash this night,
To break this shadow
Into a thousand lights of sun,
Into a thousand whirling dreams
Of sun!
– Langston Hughes

Celebration at the fall of the Berlin Wall, Germany

“There are four kinds of people in the world…
Those who build walls.
Those who protect walls.
Those who breach walls.
And those who tear down walls.
Much of life is discovering who you are.
― P.S. Baber, Cassie Draws the Universe

“OK” indicates that landmines have been cleared

Kamdesh, Afghanistan

One of the most ancient forms of folk art is the handprint, a decorative mark that
I have photographed on walls in many parts of the world. In this house the
wood-panelled walls are covered with a series of roughly applied impressions of family members’ handprints.


Walls are the publishers of the poor.
– Eduardo Galeano


The words of the prophets are written on the subway walls, and tenement halls …
– Paul Simon



New York, USA

New York, USA

Every wall is a door.
– Ralph Waldo Emerson


Chiang Mai, Thailand

…Before I built a wall I’d ask to know
What I was walling in or walling out,
And to whom I was like to give offence.
Something there is that doesn’t
love a wall …
– Robert Frost

Duomo di Orvieto, Italy


A world without walls is the only sustainable world. . . .
If the world is dominated by people who believe that their races,
their religions, their ethnic differences are the most important factors,
then a huge number of people will perish in this century.
– President Bill Clinton

Steve McCurry at the Great Wall of China near Beijing, China


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

 Kunstmuseum-Wolfsburg, Germany – January 19, 2013

 Chris Beetles Gallery, London, U.K. – January 2013

 Kunsthalle Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland – June 1, 2013

Upstairs, Downstairs

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


For centuries, stairs have symbolized journeys, rites of passage,
and stages of  life in art, literature, and music.


My Soul. I summon to the winding ancient stair;
Set all your mind upon the steep ascent,
Upon the broken, crumbling battlement,
Upon the breathless starlit air,
‘Upon the star that marks the hidden pole;
Fix every wandering thought upon
That quarter where all thought is done:
Who can distinguish darkness from the soul
William Butler Yeats


Stairs are climbed step by step.
– Turkish Proverb


Children’s stories tell tales of boys and girls discovering treasures upstairs in the
attic and fearing what is downstairs in the basement.


Faith is taking the first step even when
you don’t see the whole staircase.

– Martin Luther King, Jr.




Man, unlike anything organic or inorganic in the universe,
grows beyond his work, walks up the stairs of his concepts,
emerges ahead of his accomplishments.
– John Steinbeck


Jodhpur, India

My soul can find no staircase to Heaven unless it be
through Earth’s loveliness.
– Michelangelo


Mt. Popa, Burma
The stairway climbs a 300-foot lava plug crowned by Buddhist temples.


Mother to Son
Well, Son, I’ll tell you:
Life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.
It’s had tacks in it,
And splinters,
And boards torn up, And places with no carpet on the floor —
But all the time
I’se been a-climbin’ on,
And reachin’ landin’s,
And turnin’ corners,
And sometimes goin’ in the dark
Where there ain’t been no light.
So boy, don’t you turn back.
Don’t you set down on the steps
‘Cause you finds it’s kinder hard.
Don’t you fall now —
For I’se still goin’, honey,
I’se still climbin’,
And life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.
– Langston Hughes

New York, September 12, 2001 


New York

Halfway down the stairs
is a stair
where i sit.
there isn’t any
other stair
quite like
i’m not at the bottom,
i’m not at the top;
so this is the stair
I always

Halfway up the stairs
Isn’t up
And it isn’t down.
It isn’t in the nursery,
It isn’t in town.
And all sorts of funny thoughts
Run round my head.
It isn’t really
It’s somewhere else
A.A. Milne


Steep steps
Uneven treads
– bmv






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