Magnum is a community of thought, a shared human quality, a curiosity about what is going on in the world, a respect for what is going on and a desire to transcribe it visually.
– Henri Cartier-Bresson
In 1947, following the aftermath of the Second World War, four pioneering photographers founded a now legendary alliance. Combining an extraordinary range of individual styles into one powerful collaboration, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Robert Capa, George Rodger and David Seymour started, over a celebratory bottle of champagne, the most important artists’ cooperative ever created: The Magnum Photos agency.
Magnum Photos represents some of the world’s most renowned photographers, maintaining its founding ideals and idiosyncratic mix of journalist, artist and storyteller. Our photographers share a vision to chronicle world events, people, places and culture with a powerful narrative that defies convention, shatters the status quo, redefines history and transforms lives.
For nearly 70 years Magnum Photos has been providing the highest quality photographic content to an international client base of media, charities, publishers, brands and cultural institutions. The Magnum Photos library is a living archive updated regularly with new work from across the globe.
Magnum has documented most of the world’s major events and personalities since the 1930s; covering industry, society and people, places of interest, politics and news events, disasters and conflict.. In short, when you picture an iconic image, but can’t think who took it or where it can be found, it probably came from Magnum.
Magnum photographers are a rarity and the agency is self-selecting; membership is a minimum four year process and is considered the finest accolade of a photographer’s career.
Magnum Photos reaches a global audience and has established itself as the authentic, storytelling photographic brand. It remains loyal to its original values of uncompromising excellence, truth, respect and independence.
Magnum Manifesto, the landmark exhibition celebrating the 70th anniversary of Magnum Photos, was exhibited at International Center of Photography.