Updates from the 2020 Magnum Photos Annual General Meeting

Five new nominees join the agency, while Olivia Arthur becomes president

Magnum Zoom AGM Group Picture

Magnum’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) closed this weekend, following a week of online events and internal discussion about the year ahead.

The AGM is Magnum’s only official annual opportunity to bring together its community of photographers, estates and international staff to discuss agency business and vote on potential new members, associates and nominees.

Due to the pandemic this year’s AGM took place online, alongside a public events program which included the presentation of Magnum Flow, a new online project launched during lockdown which shares historic and contemporary images, writings, and artworks from Magnum members in near real-time, and a conversation on the colonial archive between Mark Sealy, Mikhael Subotzky and Sim Chi Yin.

The assembly welcomed Caitlin Hughes, Magnum’s new CEO, who joined the organisation to further strengthen the fundamentals of the business as well as to advance Magnum’s reputation as a pioneer at the forefront of digital innovation.

As an international photographic cooperative owned by its photographer-members, Magnum has a structured process for introducing new members. Photographers first join the organization as nominees, before progressing to become associates, and then finally gaining admission to the Magnum collective as full life-long members.

©Hannah Price

This year’s AGM saw five new nominees welcomed into the agency:


© Khalik Allah
©Colby Deal
© Yael Martinez
©Sabiha Cimen

The following motions were passed regarding status changes of photographers already within Magnum:


Lorenzo Meloni Fighter of Al-Karama (Operation Dignity, under General Haftar) with military hat of the old regime of Gaddafi. They fight against the coalition of Libya Dawn (Fajr Libya). Al-Aziziyah. Libya. April (...)
Gregory Halpern From the project "ZZYZX". Los Angeles and vicinity. USA. 2008-2015. © Gregory Halpern | Magnum Photos
Rafał Milach International Border Guard training organized by Hungarian police and military forces. Presentation day included such elements of trainig such as pacification of riots in refugee camp, patroling th (...)
Lúa Ribeira The Behead. Salome´ carrying a tray with the Baptist´s head. Cordoba Spain. 2019. © Lúa Ribeira | Magnum Photos
Lindokuhle Sobekwa Farm workers with their boss child in a local supermarket. Daleside. Johannesburg. South Africa. 2019. © Lindokuhle Sobekwa | Magnum Photos
Emin Özmen Office of the Turkish Prime Minister, Binali Yildirim, in Turkey's Grand National Assembly in Ankara. It was badly damaged during air strikes on the night of the military coup attempt in Ankara. An (...)
Sohrab Hura Kerala. India. 2014. © Sohrab Hura | Magnum Photos

Magnum’s AGM was led by Hughes and the outgoing president, Thomas Dworzak, who has arrived at the end of his 3-year term. It was decided that he would be succeeded as President of Magnum Photos by Olivia Arthur following a unanimous vote.

Dworzak said: “It was a marvellous honour to spend three years serving an organization as steeped in history as Magnum. I am delighted to welcome such an impressively talented, diverse and inspiring group of photographers as join our number this weekend. This is what builds the future.”

Arthur said: “I came into this amazing family twelve years ago and in that time I have seen a great deal of growth and change. I am honoured to be taking over this role from Thomas who has served us so well, and look forward to being part of a new era in Magnum’s history as we continue to move forwards.”

With eyes to the future, Hughes said: “I am thrilled to welcome our new nominees who come from a range of different backgrounds and add to the plurality of voices inside Magnum. Whilst Covid-19 presents challenges for arts and culture around the world, Magnum is fortunate to have an incredible roster of talent who are able to connect with their audiences in a powerful way online. We could not wish for a more engaged and supportive community of digital followers and I look forward deepening these relationships in the coming years.”

Stay in touch
Learn about online and offline exhibitions, photography fairs, gallery events, plus fine print news and activities, on a monthly basis.
Get fortnightly tips and advice articles, find out about the latest workshops, free online events and on-demand courses.
Stay up to date every Thursday with Magnum photographers’ activities, new work, stories published on the Magnum website, and the latest offerings from our shop.