Magnum Digest

The Magnum Digest: September 25, 2020

Sabiha Çimen depicts Istanbul’s public baths for The New York Times, Alessandra Sanguinetti’s new book featured on i-D, Martin Scorsese writes on Susan Meiselas’ new project about Little Italy’s rooftops, plus more of the latest this week

Sabiha Çimen The central navel stone at the Cemberlitas hammam. © Sabiha Çimen for The New York Times © Sabiha Çimen

Sabiha Çimen’s work in The New York Times

Leslie Jamison has written about Istanbul’s famed public baths for The New York Times. The writer visited six baths over 36 hours, shortly before Covid-19 closed many such institutions. Jamison reflects on missing seeing strangers’ bodies without the pall of fear cast by the pandemic. The article is accompanied by 2020 Magnum nominee Sabiha Çimen’s photographs. Read the feature and see the work here.

Learn about Çimen’s long-term project on Turkey’s hafiz — children who study and memorize the Qur’an — here, on Magnum.

Sabiha Çimen Bathers socialize at the Cemberlitas hammam in Istanbul in March. © Sabiha Çimen for The New York Times © Sabiha Çimen | Magnum Photos

Alessandra Sanguinetti’s new book on i-D 

i-D has written about the second instalment in Alessandra Sanguinetti’s very long-term project on her pair of muses, Guillermina and Belinda. Sanguinetti first started photographing the pair as young children who she had come across while photographing farm life in rural Argentina. The relationship grew, and the photographer kept returning to them, photographing them as they moved toward adolescence. The earliest portion of the still-ongoing work became the book The Adventures of Guille and Belinda and the Enigmatic Meaning of Their Dreams. The new title, published by MACK, is titled The Illusion of An Everlasting Summer and reveals those young girls’ transformation into adults, mothers, and wives. Read i-D’s write-up of the new book here.

Alessandra Sanguinetti From ‘The Adventures of Guille and Belinda and The Illusion of an Everlasting Summer’ (MACK, 2020). © Alessandra Sanguinetti | Magnum Photos

Martin Scorsese reflects on New York rooftops and Susan Meiselas’ new book

The Telegraph has shared a text by director Martin Scorsese, reflecting on the significance of the rooftop in Italian-American culture, as well as its appearances in his film works. The piece appears as a foreword to Susan MeiselasTar Beach: Life on the Rooftops of Little Italy, a new book exploring archival photographs, family histories and the transcendental potential of the rooftop space for working class Italian-American families. “The endless crowds,” Scorsese muses, “the filth and the grime, the constant noise, the chaos, the claustrophobia, the non-stop motion of everything… you would walk up that flight of stairs, open the door, and you were above it all.” Read the piece on The Telegraph here. You can find signed copies of the book now, via the Magnum shop here.

Tootsie Viviano cools off under a home-made shower. From Tar Beach: Life on the Rooftops of Little Italy. 1964.

The FT on Christopher Anderson’s new book, Pia

The Financial Times recently presented a write-up on Pia, the latest book by Christopher Anderson, published by Stanley/Barker. Focused upon Anderson’s own daughter and dealing with issues of fatherhood and displacement, Pia is described in the paper as a “a carefully crafted and often rose-tinted glimpse of childhood.” Read the write up here.

Christopher Anderson Pia with balloon in Gracia. Barcelona. Spain. 2016. © Christopher Anderson | Magnum Photos

Chien-Chi Chang’s film to show at Mediations Biennale

A film by Chien-Chi Chang, ‘The War That Never Was’, will be shown at the 7th Mediations Biennale Poland from October 1. Selected in response to the biennale’s themes of “object-oriented ontologies”, the 2017 film explores the Cold War and its oblique effects on his family history, as well as its overarching effects on Taiwan’s history. You can view the film throughout October. Find out more information about the biennale here.

From 'The War That Never Was'
Chien-Chi Chang From 'The War That Never Was' © Chien-Chi Chang | Magnum Photos

Program about Stuart Franklin’s ‘tank man’ airs on BBC Radio

An episode of Witness History, on the BBC World Service radio station, recently featured an interview with Stuart Franklin, investigating the story of the much-published image of the ‘tank man’. Franklin recounts the events he witnessed on June 4, 1989, at Tiananmen Square, Beijing, when he photographed the pivotal student protests. UK listeners can access the broadcast on-demand here.

Stuart Franklin 'The Tank Man' stopping the column of T59 tanks. Tien An Men Square. Beijing. China. 4th June 1989. © Stuart Franklin | Magnum Photos

Classic electoral campaign photographs by Magnum photographers on CNN

CNN has published a photo story, on the subject of ‘the campaign photographs we’re missing this year’, featuring influential images by Cornell Capa, Gilles Peress, and Raymond Depardon, of American presidents. In the images, John F Kennedy and Ronald Reagan are seen greeting supporters out on the trail, while Richard Nixon displays his iconic double-V hand gesture as he steps off an airplane in Iowa. See the full piece here.

On Magnum, see images and read a feature exploring the impact of TV debates on American presidential elections, from 1960’s Nixon vs. Kennedy, to 2016’s Clinton vs. Trump, here.

Raymond Depardon Republican candidate Richard Nixon campaigning for Presidency. Sioux City. Iowa state. USA. October 1968. © Raymond Depardon | Magnum Photos

PetaPixel reveals how to photograph dogs like Elliott Erwitt

A recent blogpost on PetaPixel pays homage to Elliott Erwitt’s skill for making striking, witty, and offbeat images of dogs. In their investigation of the photographer’s technique, PetaPixel references a 1981 TV appearance by the photographer. Erwitt says his approach is less premeditated, than the result of serendipity: “I really don’t think about the big picture or what I’m doing — I just take pictures and hope that something comes out of it.” Read the piece here.

Elliott Erwitt New York, New York. USA. 1974. © Elliott Erwitt | Magnum Photos

Harry Gruyaert’s Last Call in Buzzfeed’s featured photo stories

Buzzfeed has selected a piece by Harry Gruyaert in its recent feature, ‘8 Photo Stories That Will Challenge Your View Of The World’. They write, “Harry Gruyaert’s book about airports feels more poignant now that travel is more fraught, and is an excellent example of how good pictures can be found even in seemingly boring places.” See the full run-down here. Find the piece on Magnum here.

Harry Gruyaert Roissy/Charles-de-Gaulle airport. Paris. France. 2013. © Harry Gruyaert | Magnum Photos