Magnum Photos Now: Bruce Gilden Up Close • Magnum Photos

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Bruce Gilden Dayworker and homeless man in a government run building. 2000. © Bruce Gilden | Magnum Photos

This July, Magnum photographer Bruce Gilden will discuss his distinct approach to photography with Emma Chetcuti, director at arts organization Multistory, at the Barbican in London.

It was Magnum Photos co-founder Robert Capa who famously professed, “if your pictures aren’t good enough, you’re not close enough,” but it was Bruce Gilden who made this dictum his defining factor.

For Gilden, physical proximity to his subjects is paramount, which, combined with his signature use of flash, makes for photographs that invite the viewer to explore his subjects’ imperfections in the most minute and vivid detail.

In conversation with Emma Chetcuti, director at arts organization Multistory, this latest instalment of Magnum Photos Now (our ongoing series of talks in partnership with the Barbican), will explore what distance means in photography for the photographer, the subject, but also for the viewer.

Book tickets here.

Bruce Gilden New York City. USA. 1990. © Bruce Gilden | Magnum Photos
Bruce Gilden Man walking in Wall Street area. New York City, USA. September 17th, 2001. © Bruce Gilden | Magnum Photos

Bruce Gilden

An Iconic street photographer with a unique style, Bruce Gilden was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1946. In 1967, after a brief career in acting, he decided to buy a camera and to become a photographer.

Right from childhood, Gilden has always been fascinated by life on the streets and the complicated and fascinating motion it involves. It was this spark that inspired his first long-term personal projects, photographing in Coney Island and then during the Mardi Gras in New Orleans.

Over the years he has produced long and detailed photographic projects in New York, Haiti, France , Ireland, India, Russia, Japan and now in America.

Gilden has published 15 monographs of his work and joined Magnum Photos in 1998. He lives in Beacon, New York.

Bruce Gilden Trisha, Overtown, Miami, Florida. USA. 2017. © Bruce Gilden | Magnum Photos
Bruce Gilden Nathen, a farm boy. Iowa, USA. 2017. © Bruce Gilden | Magnum Photos

Emma Chetcuti

Emma Chetcuti is the Director of Multistory, an arts organisation located in the Black Country in the West Midlands. Multistory connects photographers, filmmakers and writers with communities, who have little or no access to the arts, to make visible their stories about everyday life.

The work is presented in exhibitions, films, publications and podcasts to local audiences as well as regionally, nationally and internationally. The growing body of work is also accessible online and is a lasting, contemporary photographic archive of the area.

Book tickets here.

Bruce Gilden New York City, USA. 1986. © Bruce Gilden | Magnum Photos