Steve McCurry has been one of the most iconic figures in contemporary photography
for more than five decades.
Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, McCurry studied cinematography at Pennsylvania State University, before going on to work for a newspaper. After two years, 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.
It was after several months of travel that he crossed the border into Pakistan. In a small village, 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 country to Western journalists. Emerging in traditional dress, with a full beard and weather-worn features after months embedded with the Mujahideen, McCurry made his way over the Pakistan border with his film sewn into his clothes. McCurry's images were among the first to show the world the brutality of the Russian invasion. Since then, McCurry has gone on to create unforgettable images over all seven continents and numerous countries. His body of work spans conflicts, vanishing cultures, ancient traditions, and contemporary culture alike - yet always retains the human element that made his celebrated image of the Afghan Girl such a powerful image.
McCurry has been recognized with some of the most prestigious awards in the industry, including the Robert Capa Gold Medal. Most recently, the Royal Photographic Society in London awarded McCurry the Centenary Medal for Lifetime Achievement and in 2019, McCurry was inducted into the International Photography Hall of Fame.