The Passing of Magnum Photographer Abbas

The "historian of the present" died yesterday in Paris after a 60 year career in photojournalism.

Yesterday was a heavy day for the world of journalism due to the passing of Magnum photojournalist Abbas, the self-described “historian of the present.” He had a 60 year career that heavily focused on religion all over the globe. “He was a pillar of Magnum, a godfather for a generation of younger photojournalists. He was a citizen of the world he relentlessly documented; its wars, its disasters, its revolutions and upheavals, and its beliefs—all his life.” Magnum president Thomas Dworzak wrote in a tribute.

Abbas was from Iran but spent most of his life in exile in Paris. He published several books throughout the years; Iran Diary 1971-2002; Return to Mexico: Journeys Beyond the Mask(1992), Allah O Akbar: A Journey Through Militant Islam (1994), and In Whose Name?: The Islamic World after 9/11 (2009), Faces of Christianity: A Photographic Journey (2000) and Gods I’ve Seen (2016), a look at Hinduism.

Abbas explained,  “I don’t just make stories about what’s happening. I’m making stories about my way of seeing what’s happening.”

The Passing of Magnum Photographer Abbas
Jerusalem 1995 © Photo A. Abbas. Magnum Photos
The Passing of Magnum Photographer Abbas
Tehran 2001 © Photo A. Abbas. Magnum Photos
The Passing of Magnum Photographer Abbas
Tehran 2001 © Photo A. Abbas. Magnum Photos
The Passing of Magnum Photographer Abbas
Alabama 2003 © Photo A. Abbas. Magnum Photos
The Passing of Magnum Photographer Abbas
Belfast 1972 © Photo A. Abbas. Magnum Photos
The Passing of Magnum Photographer Abbas
Outside Tehran 1997 © Photo A. Abbas. Magnum Photos

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