Nick Ut : June 8, 1972 ; Trang bang village : Kim Phuc 9 year old girl: South Vietnam drop napalm in her village.” – Nick and Kim still keep in touch
Ron Galella : “Oct 4, 1971. NYC ” Windblown Jackie” This was my lucky day! I followed Jackie leaving her 5th Ave Apt on 85th St. She turned the corner going up Madison Ave. Instead of running up to her, i hopped a taxi to catch up to her at 91st and the cab driver blew his horn, Jackie turned for the third, lucky shot-exclusive, off guard, spontaneous, unrehearsed-the only game-hide to capture the natural qualities. Da Vinci had his Mona Lisa, I got it in my Mona Lisa smile.”
Harry Benson: “Brian Epstein — Beatles’ manager — had just told them they were number one in America, and I was coming with them to New York, 1964.”
Karen Kuehn: “From the 1993 Cats Story shot for National Geographic. The director Thomas Kennedy asked me to shoot an entire story about ‘cats.’ He did not want it to be typical! So problem solving this assignment was good fun. The Russian Blue Cat and Ballerina legs was inspired by George Balanchine — he used the idea of cats landing always on their toes to teach his dancers.”
Elliot Erwitt: “The picture I am holding was snapped in 1974 just across the street from my apartment in New York’s Central Park. It has been 38 years since that event and sadly I have lost track of the participants.”
Jeff Widener holds his photo of Tank Man in Tienanmen Square from 1989.
Lyle Owerko: “ No one knew such a beautiful warm day would serve as the backdrop to one of the most painful and confusing events to the heart of mankind. This picture is one small part of such a huge event that ties the threads of thousands of stories and millions of people together. Written words will never convey the whole scope of the event, nor even summarize the sounds, the smells or even the voices that are frozen in my memory bank from that day. I did the best job I could in photographing 9/11 so that future generations would have an idea of the scope of what happened, to have the evidence of how innocence can so easily be snatched away in a razor’s edged moment of time. My hope is that in time the wounds and pain will heal and that wisdom and peace will prevail among the darkness of this event, so that humanity can move forward into a time of grace and understanding.”
Mark Seliger: “ Originally an inside opener for Rolling Stone cover story of Nirvana in conjunction with the release of In Utero, my first Polaroid (with Negative) was by far the most emotional and revealing of his spirit. Two months later Kurt died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to his head. This photograph became the memorial RS cover.”
Neil Leifer holds his photo, Ali vs. Liston, which he took on May 25, 1965 in Lewiston, Maine.
Bill Eppridge stands with his photo of Robert F. Kennedy after his assassination on June 5, 1968.
Mary Ellen Mark: “ I am holding my photograph of Ram Prakash Singh and his beloved elephant Shyama — taken in 1990. Ram Prakash Singh was the ringmaster of The Great Golden Circus. The photograph was done in Ahmedabad India. This was part of my Indian Circus Project.”
Brent Stirton: “ This is Virunga, the first National Park in Africa, in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The Silverback Mountain Gorilla, along with 6 females, had been killed by a group trying to intimidate conservation rangers into being less proactive in their efforts against poaching & illegal charcoal making. There are only about 40 of these Silverbacks in the world, so the Rangers were devastated at the assassination. This procession went on for about 5 kms, moving the 600 pound body over hills & through the forest. Over 120 of these rangers have died in the last 10 years doing this job; most make less than $10 a month. They’re heroes, there’s just no other word that seems appropriate to describe these incredible African men.”
Brian Smith: “The magic of photography happens when you don’t see what’s coming next.”
Douglas Kirkland: “This is from my Evening with Marilyn.”
“Cameras did not make these photographs, the photographers did. Without the dedication of photographers, like these passionate men and women, history would not have been recorded through their eyes and these moments they hold would not exist for our observation. Some of these photographers not only documented their generation but, their photographs have defined it.” – Tim Mantoani