Exile: Magnum x Canon at Visa Pour l’Image
In the spirit of humanitarian photography for which the agency has become known for, Magnum Photos continues to tell the global story of people on the move
"“Land makes people into what they are. Of that I am sure. If they lose it, they forfeit their solvency and a little bit of their souls, which they will spend the rest of their lives trying to regain.”
- Larry Towell, from his book ‘The World from my Front Porch’ (2008)
Towell, like many of his Magnum colleagues, has met and photographed people who have lost their home and their homeland all over the world. People who, for political or economic reasons, were forced to leave their country; into exile by war or natural disasters, and who possessed only the little they could carry. Some sought asylum in the West, others ended up in refugee camps or tried in vain to return to their own countries.
The exhibition Exile eschews any form of historical, chronological or geographical order. The aim is to visualize the sheer number of international conflicts which have occurred since the Second World War, and the resultant masses of exiles and refugees. Similar in their fate, the refugees progress towards an uncertain future, uprooted, homeless, transient.
In the spirit of humanitarian photography for which the agency has become known for, Magnum Photos continues to tell the global story of people on the move. In summer 2015 Magnum embarked on a collective process to document the recent refugee crisis in Europe, producing over twenty visual stories and counting, which highlight not just the situation as it unfolds in the Mediterranean but also the wider global story of migration in the Middle East, Africa, South America and China.
The work can be seen as a special editorial partnership with MSNBC.com, as collaborations with the International Committee of the Red Cross and in autumn 2016 Magnum Photos will publish ‘Europa – An Illustrated Introduction to Europe for Migrants and Refugees’, a multilingual book which will provide newcomers with information on Europe’s recent immigration history, practical information for major destination countries and the testimonials of the diverse people who make Europe what it is today.