Steve McCurry American, b. 1950

Steve McCurry has been one of the most iconic voices in contemporary photography for more than 30 years, with scores of magazine and book covers, books, and many exhibitions around the world.


Born in a suburb of Philadelphia, McCurry studied film at Penn. State before going to work for a local newspaper. After several years of freelance work, McCurry made his first of what would become many trips to India. Traveling with little more than a bag of clothes and film, he made his way across the subcontinent, exploring the country with his camera. After several months of travel, he found himself crossing the border into Pakistan. There, he met a group of refugees from Afghanistan, who smuggled him across the border into their country, just as the Russian Invasion was closing the Afghanistan to all Western journalists. Emerging in traditional dress with a full beard and weather-worn features after weeks embedded with the Mujahedeen, McCurry brought the world the first images of the conflict in Afghanistan, putting a human face to the issue.


Since then, McCurry has gone on to create stunning images over six continents and countless countries. His work spans conflicts, vanishing cultures, ancient traditions, and contemporary culture - yet always retains the human element that made his celebrated image of the Afghan Girl so powerful.


McCurry is the recipient of several prestigious awards and honors including the Robert Capa Gold Medal, National Press Photographers Award, and four First Prize awards from the World Press Photo contest. The Minister of French Culture appointed McCurry a Knight of the Orders of Arts and Letters, and the Royal Photographic Society in London awarded McCurry the Centenary Award for Lifetime Achievement. Steve McCurry has published almost twenty books including: A Search for Elsewhere (2020), Steve McCurry: A Life in Pictures (2018), Afghanistan (2017); On Reading (2016); India (2015); From These Hands: A Journey Along the Coffee Trail (2015); Untold: The Stories Behind the Photographs (2013); and The Iconic Photographs (2011).