Lensculture & Magnum Photo Award 2017


MAGNUM, a name everybody who even knows a bit about photography is familiar with. For decades Magnum has ranged among the most important and most influential photo agencies worldwide. Many of the most popular photographers are among the series of Magnum photographers and working under a contract for Magnum Photos surely is a great honor.

Magnum was founded in 1947, which means that the legendary agency will celebrate its 70th anniversary on 27 April this year. To celebrate this special event Magnum and Lens Culture Magazine are organizing a photo competition.

The Magnum Photography Award will give a chance to all photographic talents from all over the world to present their work on an international stage. We think this is a great idea, even the thought of having a chance to present your own pictures in connection with Magnum makes us all excited.

For a second time Magnum Photography and Lens Culture Magazine are aiming to discover the best photographers in the world. A jury is going to award all submitted photos, 12 winners and 20 finalists in 6 categories (documentary, street photography, portrait, fine art, photo journalism and open compositions).

On their website Magnum emphasizes what participating at an award-winning contest of such popularity actually means for your own photo. The images classified by the jury as top photos are shared with a public of 3.5 million people and in addition the winners can be happy with a publication of their own photo series. If that isn’t enough already, the works of the winners as well as those of the finalists and the jury’s favorites will be exhibited in London’s Photographer’s Gallery.

One part of the prize is getting access to Magnum workshops worldwide, which in our opinion is already a very good reason to take this incredible opportunity. 😉

Submission deadline is on 16 May 2017!

Inge Morath


Photo: Inge Morath

“Photography is a strange phenomenon. In spite of the use of that technical instrument, the camera, no two photographers, even if they were at the same place at the same time, come back with the same pictures. The personal vision is usually there from the beginning; result of a special chemistry of background and feelings, traditions and their rejection, of sensibility and voyeurism. You trust your eye and you cannot help but bare your soul. One’s vision finds of necessity the form suitable to express it.”

Inge Morath, Life as a Photographer, 1999

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Elliott Erwitt

Nobody spending even a little time on photography can get away without having heard of Elliott Erwitt. His pictures are known worldwide, they make you smile and reflect about life, you can even buy them printed on postcards in stores around the world.His sense of humor is famous and for the way he makes people rediscover the beauty of this world in smiles and laughter.

Erwitt, who says about himself that he’s serious about not being serious, was born in 1928 in Paris where he grew up, besides living in Milan, in the first couple of years. In 1939 he emigrated to the US with his family, he graduated in Los Angeles and worked in a photo lab during World War Two.



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Video-Tip: René Burri tells the story underlying his most noted photos


I always imagined the person of René Burri to be like a musician who eschews spotlight and whose songs are practically known by everyone, only that no one can exactly tell the name of the artist when prompted to do so. He is without a doubt one of the best Magnum-photographers, but never really gained the fame of a Henri Cartier-Bresson or Robert Capa. And yet his photos essentially shaped our conception of important historical figures such as Che Guevara and Pablo Picasso. That is why I was delighted when I discovered the embedded video below and found the underlying stories of his best known photos highly intriguing.


Image: Screenshot of the Video “Six Photographs”: René Burri

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