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Nov 28

Anything less would be mercenary.”. After leaving school at 15, he signed up for National Service in the Royal Air Force as a photographic assistant, and his first posting was during the Suez Canal crisis in 1956. Away from war Don’s work has often focused on the suffering of the poor and underprivileged and he has produced moving essays on the homeless of London’s East End and the working classes of Britain’s industrialised cities. Then I quickly fall on my knees, in my mind if not literally, and I say : 'Please God, save me from this. ", "Photography for me is not looking, it’s feeling. [13][14][15][16][17] At the time he believed it was because the Thatcher government felt his images might be too disturbing politically. In 1982 the British Government refused to grant McCullin a press pass to cover the Falklands War, claiming the boat was full. A special exhibition dedicated to his work is to be commissioned. Tate Britain presents a comprehensive retrospective of the legendary British photographer Don McCullin It's all gone celebrity, "Don McCullin interview: life in black & white", "Shaped by War: Photographs by Don McCullin, Imperial War Museum, London", "Don McCullin: 'Digital photography can be a totally lying experience, "Angelina Jolie to direct biopic of photographer Don McCullin starring Tom Hardy", "John Daniel and honorary graduate Don McCullin", Royal Photographic Society's Centenary Award, "Royal Photographic Society's Centenary Award", "Sir Donald McCullin CBE, Hon FRPS | Honorary graduates | University of Exeter", "Shaped By War: Photographs by Don McCullin, Imperial War Museum North", "Shaped by War: Photographs by Don McCullin", Shaped by War: Photographs by Don McCullin: 7 October 2011 – 15 April 2012, "Entre Vues : Frank Horvat – Don McCullin (London, August 1987)", "BBC Radio 3 – Transcript of the John Tusa Interview with Don McCullin", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Don_McCullin&oldid=990312534, Commanders of the Order of the British Empire, Pages containing London Gazette template with parameter supp set to y, Wikipedia articles with BIBSYS identifiers, Wikipedia articles with RKDartists identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SELIBR identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SNAC-ID identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SUDOC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with Trove identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. [19], Filmed in February 2018 and broadcast the following May, the BBC Four documentary The Road To Palmyra[20] saw McCullin visit Syria with historian Dan Cruickshank to see the devastation left by the conflict on the UNESCO listed site of Palmyra. [7][9] Between 1966 and 1984, he worked as an overseas correspondent for the Sunday Times Magazine, recording ecological and man-made catastrophes such as wars, amongst them Biafra in 1968, and victims of the African AIDS epidemic. 2003: Royal Photographic Society's Special 150th Anniversary Medal and Honorary Fellowship (HonFRPS) in recognition of a sustained, significant contribution to the art of photography. The film was nominated for two BAFTA awards. When asked about the rise of digital photography, he said: "Digital photography can be a totally lying experience – you can move what you want, the whole thing can’t be trusted really". His career, which began in 1959, has specialised in examining the underside of society, and his photographs have depicted the unemployed, downtrodden and the impoverished. In 1958 he took a photograph of a local London gang posing in a bombed out building. McCullin remembers a childhood of poverty, bigotry and violence. He won a scholarship to Hammersmith School of Arts and Crafts[4] but, following the death of his father, he left school at the age of 15, without qualifications, for a catering job on the railways. 2007: Royal Photographic Society's Centenary Medal. [7], Living in Somerset, he is married and has five children from his marriages. This three-volume boxed set is the definitive retrospective of the life and work of Don McCullin: one of the 20th Century’s greatest photographers. As recently as October 2015 Don travelled to Kurdistan in northern Iraq to photograph the Kurds’ three-way struggle with ISIS, Syria and Turkey. If you can’t feel what you’re looking at, then you’re never going to get others to feel anything when they look at your pictures. I am sentencing myself to peace. From the early 1980s increasingly he focused his foreign adventures on more peaceful matters. What’s more, he has braved bullets and bombs not only to get the perfect shot but to help dying soldiers and wounded civilians. At the age of 15 in 1950, he left school and joined the National Service as a photographic assistant in the Royal Air Force. As a new exhibition of work by Don McCullin opens in London, Fiona Macdonald takes a look at gripping images of war and poverty by one of Britain’s greatest living photographers. [11] Also in 1968, on 28 July, he was invited to photograph the Beatles, then at the height of their fame and in the midst of recording The White Album. Yet he still feels the lure of war. For the next two decades war became a mainstay of Don’s journalism, initially for the Observer and, from 1966, for The Sunday Times. My greatest fear is sitting and staring out of a window without the passion to do anything anymore.”. Persuaded to show them to the picture editor at the Observer in 1959, aged 23, he earned his first commission and began his long and distinguished career in photography more by accident than design. And I am tired of guilt, tired of saying to myself: "I didn't kill that man on that photograph, I didn't starve that child." ", Despite his reputation as a war photographer, McCullin has said that Alfred Stieglitz was a key influence on his work. He has been shot and badly wounded in Cambodia, imprisoned in Uganda, expelled from Vietnam and had a bounty on his head in Lebanon. His first taste of war came in Cyprus, 1964, where he covered the armed eruption of ethnic and nationalistic tension, winning a World Press Photo Award for his efforts. That's why I want to photograph landscapes and flowers. Sir Don McCullin was born in 1935 in London’s Finsbury Park, which was a poor and rough area at the time. Sir Donald McCullin CBE (born 9 October 1935) is a British photojournalist, particularly recognised for his war photography and images of urban strife. McCullin was born in St Pancras[1] and grew up in Finsbury Park, but he was evacuated to a farm in Somerset during the Blitz. Don McCullin grew up in London’s war-ravaged Finsbury Park. 1978: Photo Stories, first prize stories, World Press Photo award 1977, Amsterdam. Don McCullin is one of our greatest living photographers. In 2012, a documentary film of his life titled McCullin and directed by David Morris and Jacqui Morris was released. [6][5] During this period McCullin bought his first camera, a Rolleicord for £30 when stationed in Nairobi. 1984: Spot News, second prize stories, World Press Photo award 1983, Amsterdam. His book, Shaped by War (2010) was published to accompany a retrospective exhibition at the Imperial War Museum North, Salford, England in 2010 and then at the Victoria Art Gallery, Bath and the Imperial War Museum, London. The three books comprise over 1300 pages of print and more than 700 of his most iconic photographs and previously unpublished images curated by Don and reproduced from vintage or wholly new prints made in his own darkroom. [5] His hard-hitting coverage of the Vietnam War and the Northern Ireland conflict is particularly highly regarded. Few have enjoyed a career so long; none one of such variety and critical acclaim.

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