The world-famous photo agency goes to town with four exhibitions, a live residency, a swap shop, a book launch, a series of talks and discussions, and even a t-shirt collection
Robert Capa, Henri Cartier-Bresson, George Rodger and David “Chim” Seymour founded Magnum Photos on 06 February 1947; 70 years and 92 photographers later, the agency is celebrating its anniversary. It’s running events all over the world but, with Photo London coming to town, it’s currently concentrating its efforts on the British capital with four exhibitions, a live residency, a swap shop, a book launch, a series of talks and discussions, and even a t-shirt collection.
Magnum Photos: 70 at 70 is the biggest and most public – a free exhibition in a pedestrian tunnel in King’s Cross, it picks out some of the most iconic images from the agency’s archive. The Magnum Home, by contrast, is a tightly curated show put together by Ekow Eshun, featuring images of youth culture and including interventions by Yinka Ilori which are inspired by Nigerian textiles. The Magnum Home will also feature products from Magnum’s new collaboration with Plinth, which sees images by Magnum photographers reproduced on silk scarves, tote bags and resin badges.
Magnum’s pop sensibility also shows in a capsule at the fashionable Dover Street Market, in which images of protest and resistance by photographers such as Stuart Franklin, Thomas Dworzak, Leonard Freed and Guy le Querrec are printed on t-shirts. Magnum Photos: 7 Decades of Advertising proves that the agency has always had a commercial eye, though, taking over the downstairs space at Mother London to show images created for commercial clients by Martin Parr, Steven McCurry and many more.
David Hurn’s Swaps, which is at Somerset House’s Embankment Gallery and is open to those with a Photo London ticket, shows off the photographer’s own photo collection, created by swapping his work for prints by other image-makers. It includes photographs by fellow Magnum photographers Christopher Anderson and Sergio Larrain, and is curated by Martin Parr. Inspired by the show Magnum has also organised a Swap Shop at theprintspace, in which members of the public will be able to swap their images with Magnum photographers. The Swap Shop is open for submissions from 17 May.
The Live Lab is another hands-on, public-facing show, in which Magnum photographers Mark Power, Olivia Arthur and Carl de Keyzer will make and edit new images at Magnum’s Print Room from 10 May-28 July. Tickets can be bought to see them at work, and they will also track their progress via social media. Images from the project go on show at King’s Cross Western Transit Shed from 24 June-30 July, and the photographers involved will discuss the project on 20 May at the Museum of London.
Magnum launches its big new book, Magnum Manifesto published by Thames & Hudson, to coincide with Photo London; Magnum photographers Diana Markosian, Bruce Davidson, David Hurn, Martin Parr and Carolyn Drake will all be in-conversation at Photo London, with Newsha Tavakolian also doing an in-conversation at the National Portrait Gallery and Photoworks presenting Susan Meiselas’ Desert Island Pics too.
For more information, visit www.magnumphotos.com