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Magnum Photos x Vice

© Christopher Anderson, Magnum Photos

© Christopher Anderson, Magnum Photos


I admit before I started interning at Magnum Photos I hardly new anything about their newer generation of photographers. It seems like there’s this huge gap in age – as a Magnum photographer either you’re born in the 1940s or earlier, or after the 70s. So I didn’t really know Peter van Agtmael before the day he showed up in our office, either (shame on me), and other than showing him where to find photo books here in Tokyo, there was not much time to learn more from him. So I did my research later and found the interview Vice magazine did with him.

As some of you probably already know, Vice magazine teamed up with Magnum Photos in March and features some of their photographers in an ongoing interview series called Vice loves Magnum. The interviews feature so far mainly the young generation of photographers of this historic cooperation – which I personally find very refreshing, since so much has already been written about the “old masters” like Henri Cartier-Bresson or Robert Capa, it’s time to move on.

On twitter and in the blogosphere the teaming up of Vice and Magnum has not been without some – at times harsh – criticism. Most of this criticism essentially goes in the direction of a high-quality “institution” like Magnum Photos being devaluated by sitting in the same boat with a “low-level” publication like Vice magazine. This sounds to me like the usual Internet whining of people having problems with adjusting to change. Get over it, the past won’t change. I never really read anything by Vice in depth other than the Magnum features, so I can’t put my hand in fire for the rest, but the interviews are definitely worth reading and sparked my hopes in the new generation of Magnum photographers.

Needless to say, I’m very curious about how this transition will go. This week in London is the big annual general meeting, where all Magnum photographers get together and discuss their future. Also, we will know if Peter van Agtmael will be accepted as a full member, further contributing to secure a bright new future of Magnum. Good luck, Peter.

P.S: They did the inaugural interview of the series with one of my absolute favorites of the “new generation” – Christopher Anderson – titled The Way Christopher Anderson Sees The World Is Amazing. His color photography is on the best way to be a huge influence on the way I see the world.




I will definitely have to check these out. I don't read the articles on Vice very often. I think sometimes they try a bit too hard to be edgy. But some of the shows they produce are simply amazing, especially the Vice Guide to Travel:

Cool I'll have to check that out. "Recommended by +Brian Kemper" is a seal I trust! 🙂

The interviews with Magnum photographers are not really edgy, but they do ask some pretty straightforward questions – I like that.

They have some great journalists, especially Shane Smith (CEO)
Start with his trips to North Korea and the Labor Camps:

I had no idea he was also behind Rodman's trip to meet the dear leader. He is a brave man.

+Brian Kemper Just got my bento box and wanted to start reading, then I realized it's all videos… oh well, going to be a very entertaining evening today, it seems, judging from the comments to the videos 🙂

Sorry about that +holger feroudj : )
After you finish North Korea, you can move on to the video where Shane Smith spends time with reformed cannibal warlords in Liberia.

+Brian Kemper I just finished watching the complete North Korea thingy… Kind of crazy. And those performances they do in syncro? Insane. Anarchy in karaoke? haha, Shane sure got balls 😛

Crazy is right. There was another documentary called "A State of Mind" that follows a group of girls who practice every day, pretty much all day to perform in the Mass Games. And yes, you are correct about Shane.

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