Archive for Niger

Stolen Childhoods

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 29, 2013 by stevemccurry

_2SM8311; India, 04/2012, INDIA-11596India

For the past three decades as I traveled the world on assignment I
 have witnessed children working in fields, factories, ditches, tunnels,
mines, and ship-breaking yards.

_PBS6043, Afghanistan, 2008, Hazaras, retouched: 05/27/2013 Kate DaigneaultKabul, Afghanistan

The scope of the problem is vast.
Hundreds of millions of children spend their 

childhood working and do not have an opportunity to
play, go to school, or live in a healthy environment.

INDIA-10461 (1)

INDIA-10207 (1)India

Child labor and poverty are inevitably bound together, 
and if you continue to use the labor of children as the treatment for the social disease of poverty,
you will have both poverty and child labor to the end of time.
 –  Grace Abbott

YEMEN-10052NF, Hajjah, Yemen, 1999. A shepherd boy tends to his flock.

SAM_2957; Gujarat, Rajasthan, India; 05/22/2008, INDIA-11398India

Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies is, 
in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are
cold and are not clothed.  This world in arms is not spending money alone.
It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children.
– Dwight David Eisenhower

PHILIPPINES-10017          Philippines

AFGHN-13034NF (1)Afghanistan

Marpha, Nepal, 1998Nepal

The object of employing children is not to train them,
but to get high profits from their work.

– Lewis Hine, 1908

Woman and her slave

_SM13419, Myanmar, Burma, 02/2011, BURMA-10283

There is no trust more sacred than the one the world holds with children.
There is no duty more important than ensuring that their rights are respected,
that their welfare is protected, that their lives are free from fear and want
and that they can grow up in peace.
– Kofi Annan


00018_02. Millet Farmer, the Sahel, Niger, 1995 The Unguarded MomentNiger

Amid attempts to protect elephants from ivory poachers and dolphins from tuna nets,
the rights of children go remarkably unremarked.
– Anna Quindlen

00492_01 Tibetans, 12/2000.Tibet

_DSC1404, India, INDIA-11497India


AFGHN-10025Kabul, Afghanistan

00547_09. Monsoons, Nepal, 1983, 08/1983. A young boy works on a mountainside.Nepal

The real solution is to improve the incomes of the poor and
provide their children with decent education.
– Carol Bellamy

00075_15. Young Boy Selling Flowers, India, 1993India 

Child labour must not become the nation’s social safety net.
– Kailash Satyarthi


There is no room for complacency when 215 million children are still labouring to survive and
more than half of these are exposed to the worst forms of child labour, including slavery and
involvement in armed conflict. We cannot allow the eradication of child labour
to slip down the development agenda — all countries should be striving to
achieve this target, individually and collectively.
– Juan Somavia

_PBS6152, Afghanistan, 2008, Hazaras, retouched: 05/27/2013 Kate DaigneaultAfghanistan

AFGHN-12258_newKandahar, Afghanistan

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

Sentinels of the Earth

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 7, 2012 by stevemccurry


The tree is a slow, enduring force straining to win the sky.
– Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Wisdom of the Sands,
translated from French by Stuart Gilbert


Chinar Trees, Kashmir

If you would know strength and patience,
welcome the company of trees. 
– Hal Borland


Ayutthaya, Thailand



I hear the wind among the trees
Playing the celestial symphonies;
I see the branches downward bent,
Like keys of some great instrument.
– Henry Wadsworth Longfellow





Trees are poems that earth writes upon the sky
– Khalil Gibran



Every green tree is far more glorious than if it were made of
gold and silver.
– Martin Luther

FRANCE-10126, France, 1989



Agra, India

Trees are the earth’s endless effort to speak to the
listening heaven. 
– Rabindranath Tagore,
Fireflies, 1928



Trees are much like human beings and
enjoy each other’s company.
– Jens Jensen, Siftings, 1939



It is not so much for its beauty that the forest makes a
claim upon men’s hearts, as for that subtle something,
that quality of air that emanation from old trees,
that so wonderfully changes and renews a weary spirit.
–  Robert Louis Stevenson





I never saw a discontented tree.
They grip the ground as though they liked it, and
though fast rooted they travel about as far as we do.
They go wandering forth in all directions with every wind,
going and coming like ourselves,
traveling with us around the
sun two million miles a day,
and through space heaven knows how
fast and far!
–  John Muir


Grand Canyon, Arizona

And see the peaceful trees extend
their myriad leaves in leisured dance
they bear the weight of sky and cloud
upon the fountain of their veins
– Kathleen Raine, Collected Poems


The Sahel



  Planting trees early in spring,
we make a place for birds to sing in time to come.
How do we know? They are singing here now.
There is no other guarantee that singing will ever be.
– Wendell Berry

A4487718, THAILAND-10041NF, Chiang Mai




Believe one who knows
You will find something greater in woods than books.
Trees and stones will teach you
that which you can never learn from masters
– Bernard of Clairvaux (1090-1153)  






Dust Storm, Rajasthan, India

A few minutes ago every tree was excited,
bowing to the roaring storm, waving, swirling,
tossing their branches in glorious enthusiasm
like worship. But though to the outer ear these trees are now silent,
their songs never cease.
Every hidden cell is throbbing with music and life,
every fiber thrilling like  harp strings, while incense is ever flowing
from the balsam bells and leaves.
No wonder the hills and groves were God’s first temples…
– John Muir



Trees, proud standing people
stretching fingertips to the sky, reaching, praying
glorious attention, breathing light.
timeless confidence
bending and firm
rooted chorus line
dancing with the moon, the wind, the clouds
framing bursts of stars
tender rugged celebration
absorbing and releasing life
each holy branch holding
the power of the Universe.
–  Wallace Stevens  


More Fun and Games

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 9, 2011 by stevemccurry


Wodaabe Tribe, Niger

Laughter is by definition healthy.
– Doris Lessing,  Nobel Laureate in Literature


La Fortuna, Honduras


Shanghai Circus, Shanghai, China 


Moscow, Russia 


Perugia, Italy

If music be the food of love, play on.
– William Shakespeare

_SM15545, Havana, Cuba, 2010, CUBA-10020

Havana, Cuba




Rajasthan, India


Lucknow, India

No human being is innocent, but there is a class of innocent human actions called games.
– W. H. Auden

00660_14, Beqaa Valley, Lebanon, 2005, LEBANON-10074

Bekaa Valley, Lebanon


Mersin, Turkey 

Could we look into the head of a Chess player,
we should see there a whole world of feelings,
images, ideas, emotion and passion.
– Alfred Binet


Jodhpur, India

00635_19, PERU-10004NF6, Alto Churumazu, Yanesha People, Peru, 2004



Angkor Wat, Cambodia

Some people believe football is a matter of
life and death.
I’m very disappointed with that attitude.
I can assure you it is much, much more important than that.
– Bill Shankly, English soccer manager.


Maningrida, Australia




Young Shepherd during Holi, Rajasthan, India

We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals.
– Immanual Kant


Istanbul, Turkey

Until one has loved an animal,
a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.
– Anatole France


Mumbai/Bombay, India



Buzkashi, Kabul, Afghanistan


Yangon, Myanmar/Burma

They say golf is like life, but don’t believe them.
Golf is more complicated than that.
– Gardner Dickinson




00253_10, YEMEN-10058NF, Yemen, 1997



You must invent your own games and
teach us old ones how to play.
– Nikki Giovanni




Varanasi, India

Gatherings, Protests, and Celebrations

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 10, 2011 by stevemccurry

All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players:
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts …
– William Shakespeare, “As You Like It”


Young Monks at Tashi Lhunpr, Xigaze, Tibet


New York City, USA




Via Condotti, Rome, Italy


Mumbai/Bombay, India

LEBANON-10067, Lebanon, Druze Elders, 03/1982

Druze elders, Lebanon


Debating Monks at Bylakuppe, Karnataka, India


One of Mumbai’s laughing clubs, India


Peshawar, Pakistan




Shia Mosque, Kabul, Afghanistan


Rajasthan, India


Monsoon Festival, Kathmandu, Nepal


Kumbh Mela Festival, India

It is wonderful, the power of a faith like that, that can make multitudes upon multitudes of the old and weak and the young and frail enter without hesitation or complaint upon such incredible journeys and endure the resultant miseries without repining.
– Mark Twain


Temporary pontoon bridges across the Ganges River help to facilitate movement of some of the thirty million Hindu devotees who will take part in the Kumbh Mela Festival, Allahabad, India.


Thrissur Pooram, Kerala, India

Thrissur Pooram is the most extravagent and colorful festival in Kerala.  Attended by tens of thousands of devotees, the festivities include dozens of caparisoned elephants.  These Indian elephants are loved, revered, groomed, and given a prestigious place in the state’s culture.


Thrissur Pooram, Kerala, India


Ganesh Chaturthi festival, Chowpatty Beach, Mumbai, India


Yangon, Burma/Myanmar during the Thingyan Festival


Jokhang Palace, Lhasa, Tibet



These young Wadabi men are taking part in the Garawal, an annual marriage ritual performed by the tribe. In this event, dramatic make-up is applied to the faces of the men, who dance and make exaggerated expressions in an attempt to attract new brides.

On the Road

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 7, 2011 by stevemccurry

Stories about roads and journeys are as old as humankind.  One of the earliest “on the road” stories was Homer’s Odyssey, from 800 B.C.E., the story of Odysseus’ journey home after the Trojan Wars.

AFGHN-12211Southern Afghanistan

NIGER-10001NFMadaoua, Niger


From Homer to Dante,  Xuanzang , Marco Polo and Cervantes to Halliburton, to Kerouac, Durell, Theroux, Iyer, writers have taken their readers along on their roads, whether the journey is  fiction, non-fiction, or a combination of both.

MAURITANIA-10003Tiguent, Mauritania


  The words, “on the road”, can mean many things.  To the salesman, it is a time away from home trying to sell products.  To the explorer, it means setting off on an  adventure.  A road trip for athletes means that they’re playing in a different city.  To a homeless person, being on the road means the search for food and shelter.  To a Buddhist, the road may symbolize the path to enlightenment.  For refugees, the road is an escape route and symbolizes hope and safety.

AFGHN-12804NFBamiyan, Afghanistan



AFGHN-12880Near the Afghan/Pakistan border






AFGHN-10072NF5Kabul, Afghanistan



KUWAIT-10007NFAhmadi Oil Fields, Kuwait



INDIA-10837Calcutta/Kolkata, India



INDIA-10461Calcutta/Kolkata, India



INDIA-10841Rajasthan, India


“Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail” – Ralph Waldo Emerson




USA-10208Lancaster, Pennsylvania, USA

CUBA-10022Havana, Cuba



 INDIA-10206Calcutta/Kolkata, India






AFGHN-12499NF2Kabul, Afghanistan



INDIA-10405NFPorbandar, Gujarat, India



CAMBODIA-10082NF2Angkor, Cambodia


The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began,
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say.

– Lord of the Rings, J.R.R. Tolkien


TIBET-10403Kham, Tibet


TIBET-10510Amdo, Tibet


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