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From Nachtwey to Avedon: Exhibit brings together 200 iconic photographs

The author poses in front of two of the works included at the House of Lucie's exhibit of iconic 20th century photographs in Bangkok. The exhibit will feature over 200 of the most famous and groundbreaking photos ever taken, such as Steve McCurry's "Afghan Girl" which appeared on the cover of National Geographic in 1984 and featured a 12-year-old girl who has since been identified as Sharbat Gula. Photos: Ruston Banal

An exhibition of more than 200 extraordinary images by the worlds' most famous photographers was recently launched in Bangkok.

The exhibit is presented by the Lucie Foundation, a non-profit organization that helps promote photography and emerging photographers, at its gallery the House of Lucie.

It features both original prints and the published works of acclaimed photographers including Melvin Sokolsky, Tim Street-Porter, Phil Borges, Gene Trindl, Mary Ellen Mark, RJ Muna, Steve McCurry, Douglas Kirkland, Bob Willoughby, Arnold Newman, Arthur Leipzig, Lillian Bassman, Sylvia Plachy, Zana Briski, Lucien Clergue, Antonin Kratochvil, Duane Michals, Sarah Moon, Marc Riboud, Neil Leifer, Albert Watson, Elliott Erwitt, Ralph Gibson, Lord Snowdon, Kenro Izu, Howard Zieff, John Iacono, Sara Terry, Erwin Olaf, Marvin E. Newman, Mark Seliger, Reza, David Goldblatt, Lee Tanner, Michael Nyman, Nancy McGirr, Bill Eppridge, Eli Reed, Rich Clarkson, John Biever, Joel Meyerowitz, Tod Papageorge, Greg Gorman, Arno Rafael Minkkinen, Li Zhensheng, Victor Skrebneski, Lisa Kristine, Carrie Mae Weems, Jane Bown, Nick Ut, Pedro Meyer, Jerry Uelsmann, George Tice, David Hume Kennerly, Roxanne Lowit, Henry Diltz, Barton Silverman, Nathan Lyons, Graham Nash, Rosalind Fox Solomon, and Simon Bruty.


The Lucie Foundation's intention is to democratize these iconic photographs and make them accessible to all in order to educate younger generations about both history and the role of photography in depicting history.

At the event, I was starstruck as I stood before the photographs that I had previously only seen in books as a fine arts student studying the history of photography. I never imagined I would ever come face to face with the actual prints.


According to House of Lucie founder Hossein Farmani, it took them six months to secure the photographs, talking to galleries, photographers, and the photographs' owners. "The trust they give to the foundation is admirable," he said. "They agreed with the advocacy of using these photographs to inform and educate, especially the young generations of photographers."

The House of Lucie not only aims to promote international photography to the widest audiences possible but also to allow young photographers to be inspired by the works of these masters.

"I believe that by seeing these images, younger photographers get motivated and will realize that photography does change lives," Farmani said.


Having the sole intention of reaching out all possible audiences, and with the help of my colleague, UP CFA Visual Communications Prof. Joey Tanedo, I am collaborating with Farmani to mount the prints at the University of the Philippines' College of Fine Arts this November.

The exhibition will be a compendium of these photographs and the works of the Filipino awardees of the International Photography Awards (IPA), which is a joint organization of the Lucie Foundation. — BM, GMA News

Ruston Banal is the Philippine representative at IPA-Philippines.