Cart is empty
Story: This article appears in Volume 25: The Pioneer Issue.
Order Vol. 25
In 1979, disguised in local attire and without a passport, photographer Steve McCurry was smuggled into Afghanistan just before the Soviet invasion closed the country to all western journalists. He later returned to Pakistan with rolls of film sewn into his clothes and delivered the first photographic evidence of the conflict. Since then he has continued to venture into “government unadvisable” regions, crossing national borders in order to transcend cultural ones.
McCurry’s work locates the personal within the political. “When I have a strong emotional reaction to a particular situation, I always try to show the story of how those people live their lives,” he says. “I want to have some sort of insight into the human condition of the subject.” Nowhere is this intent more apparent than in McCurry’s portraits, the penetrating green-eyed glare of the Afghan Girl (Sharbat Gula) having become embedded into our collective consciousness as a symbol of the plight of refugees around the world.
“Connecting with people has never been so essential to protect our humanity,” and in a time when immigration rhetoric is too often dehumanising and questions of representation are being debated, McCurry’s work in showing the humanity of faraway issues is more pertinent than ever.
Steve McCurry: A Life in Pictures: 40 Years of Photography (2018) by Bonnie McCurry is published by Laurence King.
You May Also Like
You know how you have that one incredible friend who knows their city inside out? That’s us. We take the world’s most dynamic destinations, hand-pick the best bits and give them to you in one place. This is the kind of guide that you don’t need to run by a local – it was written by one. Eat your heart out, shop until you drop, drink like a fish, dance your socks off, sleep – then repeat.
Embrace the adventurous appetite of the next generation with an annual subscription. SUITCASE Magazine challenges travel perceptions with thought-provoking photo journals, city guides and articles by award-winning international writers.
We'll tell you where you can find the perfect boutique hotel in Paris for under £150, if you tell us about the best dive bar in your city. Deal? Share your stories and photos with #SUITCASEtravels.