Magnum Digest

Magnum Digest #185: News and Projects from January 2023

In this first monthly bulletin from of 2023, we bring you the latest news and travels of our photographers — including new commissions and exhibitions, plus two major awards and a collaboration with Bob Dylan...

'Granfluencer' Eriko Yagi, aged 66, shares her zeal for fashion. Japan, October, 2022 © Cristina de Middel/Magnum Photos.

A Global Commission for UNFPA
Magnum has partnered with the United Nations Population Fund on its #8BillionStrong campaign, marking a new milestone in the world’s population by collaborating on a series of photo stories.

The UNFPA is a United Nations agency aimed at improving reproductive and maternal health worldwide. It commissioned eight Magnum photographers to produce a story from eight different global locations to “introduce you to people who are creating a ripple effect to make the world better”, focusing on issues of resources, rights and equality.

Among them, Cristina de Middel shot a story on ‘Granfluencers‘ in Japan; Myriam Boulos documented the work of Cairo-based media platform Motherbeing, which provides sex education and information on reproductive health; and an Enri Canaj story, ‘Contributing to host-country economies,’ which documents Ukrainian refugees working in Poland and Germany.

Spasskaya tower international military music festival at Red Square. Moscow, Russia, July 26, 2022 © Nanna Heitmann/Magnum Photos.

French Ministry of Culture Gives Award to Nanna Heitmann
Nanna Heitmann has been awarded the Prix Françoise Demulder, an honor given annually by the French Ministry of Culture in partnership with Visa pour l’Image, the international photojournalism festival.

The 28-year-old photographer is recognized for her reportage, ‘War is peace’, shot in Russia since it began its war on Ukraine nearly one year ago.

The Prix Françoise Demulder, created by the French Ministry of Culture in partnership with the international photojournalism festival Visa pour l’Image, promotes the careers of women press photographers, awarding two prizes each year based on “the quality and uniqueness of their project.” It is named after the first woman press photographer to receive the prestigious World Press Photo Award, in 1976. Demulder passed away in 2008.

Heitmann was named this year alongside Canadian photographer, Adrienne Surprenant, who collects the prize for her project on the impact of climate change in Tunisia. Each photographer is given a grant of €8000 towards staging an exhibition at the Visa festival in Perpignan at the end of August.

Mark Power leading a workshop at Armani/Silos. Image by Sara Matarrese.

Magnum’s education team hosted three free workshops and two public talks in January to run alongside the exhibition, Colors, Faces, Places at Armani/Silos in Milan. Forty-five people took part in portfolio reviews, presentations and exhibition tours led by Magnum photographers Mark Power (pictured), Alex Majoli and Newsha Tavakolian.

Magnum Fashion Shoots for Crash Magazine
Arthur also recently contributed to the latest issue of Crash magazine (#98) with an exclusive fashion editorial featuring new collections from Dior and De Beers. Bruce Gilden and Harry Gruyaert also shot stories featuring Saint Laurent and Swarovski.

Mark Power Monday 6 September 1993. Southeast backing easterly 4 or 5, increasing 6 in south. Mainly fair. Moderate or good. Malin, Ayr, Scotland. Fom 'The Shipping Forecast.' © Mark Power | Magnum Photos

A Reprint of a Magnum Classic Photobook 
Mark Power’s 1996 book, The Shipping Forecast, takes its title and its cue from a BBC radio bulletin, broadcast daily since 1867, issuing warnings and weather reports for the seas around the coasts of the British Isles.

“Intangible and mysterious, familiar yet obscure…. For those at, or about to put to sea, the forecast may mean the difference between life and death. But for millions of land-lubbing radio listeners it is more than this; the enigmatic language of the forecast has entered public conciousness, creating a landscape of the imagination and confirming romantic notions of Britain’s island status. Captioned by the 0600hrs forecast on the day they were taken, these photographs attempt to challenge our assumptions of these far-flung places.”

The book was originally published to critical acclaim, selling out quickly to become a cult classic. Now, at long last, it’s available again in a newly edited and much-expanded edition, published by Gost, which includes over one hundred previously unpublished photographs along with the majority of those in the original book.

You can buy it in the Magnum shop. Power has also created a set of special limited edition prints for sale.

Power was interviewed recently on BBC Radio 4’s Front Row. Listen here.

Sabiha Çimen's 'Hafiz' at Kunsthal Rotterdam. Installation pictures by Marco De Swart.

Kunsthal Rotterdam Platforms Sabiha Çimen With First Solo Show
Sabiha Çimen’s acclaimed photography series, Hafiz, winner of the First PhotoBook at the Paris Photo-Aperture PhotoBook Awards, has now been turned into an exhibition.

This first-ever solo show for Çimen opened on January 14 at the Kunsthal Rotterdam, an iconic building designed by Rem Koolhaas. It runs until May 7.

Magnum Archive Provides the Visuals to Dylan’s Dark Soundscape
Bob Dylan has unveiled a short film featuring 79 photographs from the Magnum archive. Made to accompany a previously unreleased version of his classic 1997 track, Not Dark Yet, the new Dylan video arrives ahead of the latest installment of his ‘Bootleg’ series of rare and previously unheard recordings.

Featuring images by three generations of Magnum photographers, including Eve Arnold, Eli Reed, Paolo Pellegrin and Jonas Bendiksen, the video was put together by Clemens Habicht, a freelance designer and director, and Josh Cheuse, Communications Creative Director at Sony Music Entertainment.

“Each photographer has dedicated their lives to capture something essentially true to them, which I think can be said about Dylan’s remarkable music,” says Habicht in an interview with Magnum’s Magazine. “Each photo has its own history and story in time, and I gravitated towards images that were less depictions of events so much as the effect these events had on the people in the photographs.

Doornfontein railway station in rush hour. This picture shows the reality of apartheid without the need for any words. South Africa, 1960s. All images from South Africa, 1960s © Ernest Cole/Magnum (...)

Foam Amsterdam Opens Ernest Cole Exhibition
Following the re-release of his Ernest Cole’s seminal book on apartheid South Africa, House of Bondage (copies available here), Foam Amsterdam is staging its own exhibition of this key work in an exhibition that runs until June 14.

Full details of the show are here. And here’s an Instagram post with video snippets from the opening on January 26.

From the film "TiChan" by Olivia Arthur and Philipp Ebeling.

Magnum Films at Horschamps Festival
Olivia Arthur and Philipp Ebeling showed two films they worked on together as part of a series Paris events staged by Horschamps, dedicated to films by Magnum photographers.

Screenings of TiChan and The Stop Game were shown at Cinéma L’Arlequin on January 20. They will be followed by Jérome Sessini (February 28) with a selection of videos shot during his first trips to Ukraine, between 2014 and 2017, alongside photos taken during the current conflict; Peter Van Agtmael will show the film 2nd Tour, Hope I Don’t Die (March 16); and completing the season, Jean Gaumy will present excerpts from La Boucane, Jean-Jacques and Sous-Marin (April 18).

Deja View exhibition with Martin Parr and The Anonymous Project. Cromwell Place Gallery, London. January 31, 2023.

Déjà View Comes to London
Martin Parr’s collaboration with The Anonymous Project can be seen in London for the first time with the opening of a new exhibition at Cromwell Place Gallery.

Déja View, which was originally a book (still available in the Magnum shop, signed or unsigned), consists of pairs. For each work by Martin Parr, there is a paired image from The Anonymous Project’s collection of amateur photographs, taken between the 1950s and 80s. Featuring holidays, celebrations and people from all walks of life, the photographs represent some of Parr’s most iconic works in dialogue with vernacular photography at its finest.

The collaboration was featured in Telegraph Magazine ahead of the show.

Full details on the exhibition can be found here. And you can read a full interview between Parr and Lee Shulman of The Anonymous Project here.

Portrait of photographer Lindokuhle Sobekwa by Refilwe Mrwebi. 2018.

South African Named First Kobal Fellow
Lindokuhle Sobekwa is the recipient of a major new £50,000 prize, the John Kobal Foundation Fellowship.

Given every two years to “an artist or collective who… has established an outstanding body of lens-based work,” the Fellowship was set up “to enable an artist to move their practice forward in a way they would not otherwise be able to.”

The Foundation is collaborating with Tate Modern in London to present a series of accompanying annual lectures. The program begins with Sobekwa, who becomes the first Kobal Fellow. The 28-year-old South African photographer, who became a full member of Magnum in 2022, will travel to London to give his lecture at Tate Modern’s Starr Cinema on the evening of March 30.

County Kerry, Ireland, 1988 © Harry Gruyaert/Magnum Photos.

Harry Gruyaert Show Opens in Southern France
From Belgium to Morocco, passing through India and Egypt, Harry Gruyaert has been recording the subtle chromatic vibrations of the shoreline for decades.

His book on the subject, Rivages, published 20 years ago by Textuel, was followed by an exhibition of 53 photographs that has been traveling the world ever since. Next stop is Le Parvis de Pau, a cultural center in southern France. However, they didn’t quite have enough room to show all the photographs at once, but they didn’t want to leave any out either, so they have staged the exhibition in two parts. The first opened on January 28 and runs until April 1. The second runs April 7 to June 17.

For full details of opening times, visit here.

Or browse Gruyaert’s collection at the Magnum shop, which includes a fine print of the photograph above, as well as numerous books.

We Don't Say Goodbye, published by Gost.

Lorenzo Meloni Book in The Washington Post
“I’ll be first to admit that much war coverage these days leaves me numb,” writes Kenneth Dickerman, Photo Assignment Editor for The Washington Post, in his article on Lorenzo Meloni’s book, We Don’t Say Goodbye (copies of which are available through the Magnum shop).

“In my job, I see photos of unspeakable inhumanity on a more or less daily basis…. Even so, I believe that war coverage hasn’t become any less vital for society at large. Our inhumanity, however cyclical, must be revealed through reporting like Meloni’s.”

De Middel is seen creating this image as she ventures into nearby jungle to experiment. Image © Cristina de Middel/Magnum Photos.

Cristina de Middel Reveals Her Teachings
“I’m interested in things that have multiple ways of being understood, things that are incomplete,” explains Cristina de Middel in a new online courseStranger than Reality, made Magnum, “many times the extremes of society.”

Filmed at her home and studio in Brazil, she opens up over the next four-and-a-half hours about the purpose of her practice, not as a tool to communicate specific ‘truths’ — a problematic word as she explains later in the course — but as a way to explore complex subjects in a layered, nuanced way in order to raise questions or challenge certain stereotypes.

Rehearsals for 'Pictures From Home', the Broadway adaptation of Larry Sultan's 1992 book, shot on commission for the New York Times © Alec Soth/Magnum Photos

Pictures From Pictures From Home
Alec Soth was assigned by the New York Times to photograph behind the scenes of a new Broadway play; an adaptation of Larry Sultan’s influential 1992 photobook, Pictures From Home — which Soth once described as “my single favorite photobook combining text and images.”

© Alec Soth/Magnum Photos

In a separate assignment from the New York Times, Soth traveled across his hometown, Minneapolis, to photograph Orfield Laboratories’ recording studio. The Anechoic Chamber, pictured above, is famously known to be the most silent room ever created.

Read the full story here.

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David Hurn’s Newport
The latest zine from Café Royal Books spans 41 years in the work of David Hurn, focusing on the work he’s made in Newport, Wales, since returning there in the mid 1960s, and going on to set up the legendary ‘Doc Photo’ course alongside his own practice.

We have standard copies in the Magnum shop now, but we’re also expecting signed copies very soon.

Amsterdam, Netherlands, 1972 © Elliott Erwitt/Magnum Photos.

A New Vintage From Elliott Erwitt
Elliott Erwitt. Vintage
opened at the Villa Bassi Rathgeb Museum in Abano, Italy, on January 28. Featuring 154 photographs shown throughout the extraordinary spaces of the Venetian villa, this is a major new retrospective, complemented by an audiovisual presentation, and follows exhibitions dedicated to the work of Erwitt’s former colleagues, Eve Arnold and Robert Capa. Vintage continues until June 11.

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