The American Document / Part II
Fractured States / Peter van Agtmael

Peter van Agtmael

As sequel to The American Document, we invoke a photo essay of Magnum photographer Peter van Agtmael, The Fractured States of America, first published in National Geographic, excerpt from his book, Buzzing at the Sill.

We commend National Geographic for The Race Issue forthcoming in April on the occasion of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s 50th anniversary of his assassination, and kicking off the Diversity in America series which is to continue throughout 2018. Recently appointed Editor in Chief Susan Goldberg peers courageously into the magazine’s 130 year history and their past treatment of such subjects, acknowledging in an open editorial that they have not been beyond their own reproach. Since having explored many, highly exotic places and often with the eye of the colonialist, the magazine enters a new era of exploration within, promising to do more, and better. A bold move, and one which is deserving of not only respect, but emulation.

“Fractured States” is right. Peter van Agtmael, after returning from years of war coverage in Iraq and Afghanistan, tries to piece together memories, identity, race, class, and family, in a landscape which has become as surreal as the war he left behind.

 

Peter van Agtmael

Peter van Agtmael

Peter van Agtmael

Peter van Agtmael

Peter van Agtmael

Peter van Agtmael

Peter van Agtmael

Peter van Agtmael

Returning home, Peter van Agtmael tries to piece together memories, identity, race, class, and family, in a landscape which has become as surreal as the war he left behind.

Peter van Agtmael

Peter van Agtmael

Peter van Agtmael

Peter van Agtmael

Peter van Agtmael

Peter van Agtmael

Peter van Agtmael

Peter van Agtmael’s work largely concentrates on America, looking at issues of conflict, identity, power, race and class. He also works extensively on the Israel/Palestine conflict and throughout the Middle East. He has won the W. Eugene Smith Grant, the ICP Infinity Award for Young Photographer, the Lumix Freelens Award, the Aaron Siskind Grant, a Magnum Foundation Grant as well as awards from World Press Photo, American Photography Annual, POYi, The Pulitzer Center, The Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University, FOAM and Photo District News.

His book, Disco Night Sept 11, on America at war in the post-9/11 era was released in 2014 by Red Hook Editions. Disco Night Sept 11 was shortlisted for the Paris Photo / Aperture Book Award and was named a Book of the Year by The New York Times Magazine, Time Magazine, Mother Jones, Vogue, American Photo and Photo Eye.

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+
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We have fundamentally altered the earth's ecosystem by disrupting the natural rhythm of our planet and in doing so...
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