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Living Coral

A pit-stop tour through Pantone’s official color of 2019 as it appears throughout the work of Magnum photographers

Jonas Bendiksen Sunday church prayers at a small baptist church in Cange. Plateau Central, Haiti. 2007. © Jonas Bendiksen | Magnum Photos
Burt Glinn Coral-colored disks used both as a work of art and as backrests. Wall St. NYC, USA. 1979. © Burt Glinn | Magnum Photos
David Alan Harvey Pink beach along 800 mile penninsula. Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. 1996. © David Alan Harvey | Magnum Photos
Gueorgui Pinkhassov Istanbul, Turkey. 1997. © Gueorgui Pinkhassov | Magnum Photos
Gueorgui Pinkhassov Istanbul, Turkey. 1997. © Gueorgui Pinkhassov | Magnum Photos
Bruno Barbey Burgan oil fields burning, Kuwait. 1991. © Bruno Barbey | Magnum Photos
Alex Majoli Fashion week. Etro backstage. Milan, Italy. February 2014. © Alex Majoli | Magnum Photos
Thomas Dworzak Backstage during a multi-ethnic music performance. Makhatshkala, Republic of Dagestan, Russia. October 2000. © Thomas Dworzak | Magnum Photos
Alex Webb Night scene. Curacao, Willemstad. Antilles, Netherlands. 2010. © Alex Webb | Magnum Photos
Alex Webb CUBA. Sancti Spiritus. 1993. Baseball fans. © Alex Webb | Magnum Photos
Hiroji Kubota Approximately 70,000 students and workers gathered for Mass gymnastic and artistic performances called "Tarirang", at May Day Stadium. The stadium stands on Rungna Island, located in the Tae Dongg (...)
Martin Parr From “Signs of the Times”. “To come home in the evenings to find the kids have carried out their own form of anarchy is just about the last thing I can face.” England. 1991. © Martin Parr | Magnum Photos
David Hurn Wall and flowers in central Paris. France. 2001. © David Hurn | Magnum Photos
Martin Parr A Valentines day love cake. Delhi, India. 2009. © Martin Parr | Magnum Photos
Martin Parr From “Think of England”. Malvern, England. 2000. © Martin Parr | Magnum Photos
Martin Parr “I have seen more pillboxes in Albania then anywhere else in the world. Enver Hoxha, the communist dictator, built them to guard against invasion. Now, of course, Albania is part of the 'New Europe (...)
Ian Berry Women road workers protect themselves from the monsoon rains by wearing plastic bags slit down one side on the national highway 8 just north of Mumbai (Bombay). Maharashtra, India. 1999. © Ian Berry | Magnum Photos
Bruno Barbey Women wearing traditional Haik dresses. Town of Essaouira, Morocco. 1972. © Bruno Barbey | Magnum Photos
Christopher Anderson On the set of "Cinema Verite" in Central Park. NYC. USA. 2010. © Christopher Anderson | Magnum Photos

At the end of 2018, the PANTONE Color Institute announced that the color of 2019 was “Living Coral”. “Color is an equalizing lens through which we experience our natural digital realities and this is particularly true for Living Coral. With consumers craving human interaction and social connection, the humanizing and heartening qualities displayed by the convivial PANTONE Living Coral hit a responsive chord,” said Leatrice Eisman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute in a statement published with the announcement.

The organization, which supplies colors and trend forecasting insights to designers around the world, claims that the hue labelled as PANTONE 16-1546 Living Coral is “Vibrant, yet mellow” and “embraces us with warmth and nourishment to provide comfort and buoyancy in in our continually shifting environment.”

In an article titled “The Business of Being Pantone: Turning Color Into Money”, law, business and culture blog, The Fashion Law, emphasised the significance of the announcement, particularly within the fashion business. “The selection stands to impact everything from the colors of the garments that go down the runway any given season to the hues that florists bank on for arrangements – in theory.”

"Color is an equalizing lens through which we experience our natural digital realities and this is particularly true for Living Coral."

- Leatrice Eiseman

It also outlined how the announcement provided an opportunity, not just for PANTONE, but for brands to sell their own products or fashion media the New York Time’s Vanessa Friedman’s comments that “Pretty much just minutes after the announcement is made, my inbox is inundated with emails from brands and retailers promoting products available in the Color of the Year.”

As predicted, in the days following the announcement, articles published by fashion and lifestyle media included: Vogue, “9 Living Coral Pieces To Add Pantone’s Colour Of 2019 Into Your Home” and “Living Coral Is the Pantone Color of the Year—Here’s How to Wear It”; Refinery29, “20 Ways To Wear Living Coral” and Elle, “10 Eco-Friendly Beauty Products Celebrating 2019’s Pantone Colour Of The Year.”

Creating a visual journey through the hue, we explore the work of Magnum photographers whose photographs have captured versions of Living Coral, from colored disks in New York by Burt Glinn to enchanting sunset by Gueorgui Pinkhassov, and unusual architecture in Albania by Martin Parr.