Steve McCurry, the American photographer who immortalized the young Afghan girl with the mesmerizing green eyes, has reached the Olymp of his profession
A picture tells more than a thousand words, as the saying goes. Personal and public events are most vividly remembered through photographs. Their creators make time stand still for the length of a split second, and record history. And yet, while iconic images are burned in people’s collective retina, their creators’ names are rarely known or remembered.
Steve McCurry is one of those few exceptions. He has shot some of the most memorable images ever. Now the world-renowned artist received one of the highest distinctions in his field and the reward for a lifetime of achievement: the induction into the prestigious International Photography Hall. Along with him, seven other outstanding photo artists – Bruce Davidson, Elliott Erwitt, Ralph Gibson, Mary Ellen Mark, Paul Nicklen, Olivia Parker, and Tony Vaccaro – are 2019 inductees.
Born in Philadelpia, Penn., U.S.A., McCurry has been one of the most iconic voices in contemporary photography for more than 30 years. He trains his camera on conflicts, vanishing cultures, ancient traditions and contemporary culture alike, never failing to retain the human element.
With scores of magazine and book covers, over a dozen books, and countless exhibitions around the world to his name, McCurry has been recognized with some of the most prestigious industry awards. These include the Robert Capa Gold Medal, the National Press Photographers Award, and four first prize awards from the World Press Photo contest.
McCurry is also a frequent guest on Monaco based Silversea Cruises. A born storyteller with the soul of an explorer, his unique ability to capture what is left of the authentic beauty and truth in the world made him the cruise operator’s natural choice when they sought a global creative collaborator in 2017. His unique mission would be to chronicle Silversea’s immersive travel experiences, with a focus on revealing the world’s beauty and fragility.
Among the many places these cruises have taken him, McCurry counts the Galapagos as his favorite, describing the remote archipelago as “a time capsule and an inspiring place.” He says that to be able to explore the Galapagos Islands on a ship the same way Darwin did “was a childhood dream that came true.” Other destinations McCurry visited with Silversea include Mongolia, Svalbard, Papua New Guinea, Bhutan, Kolkata, Russia, Jordan and Vietnam, to name a few.
The best way to capture the essence of a culture is to treat people with respect, he says. “Establish a friendly smile. Most people like to be photographed. You need to make them comfortable around you, with humor.”
Visit Steve McCurry’s website to learn more about his work, his travels, his master class, and field trips with him.
Lead image by HartemLijn – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, Link
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