By Meaghan Looram, Director of Photography
The year 2021 opened with the promise of vaccines, and the belief that we would all return to “normal” after the tumultuous year of the pandemic. But the year instead took off with an insurrection in the U.S. Capitol, and saw a summer of carefree gatherings derailed by a fast-spreading virus. Governments fell, democracies were challenged, and climate-related destruction was unleashed, all while the casualties of the pandemic continued to amass. The vaccine saved some lives, but human passions, hopes and fears did their usual work to create a year that was anything but calm, and is ending with the prospect of a new variant upending plans once again.
This is the story of 2021 told visually, through the eloquent universal language of photography.
This period has underscored the special communicative power of the image, as well as the risks taken and hardship endured by photographers so they can show us the world. As some people retreated to working from home, or keeping their distance, these committed journalists did not have that option. Our writers describe and sometimes interpret the world for our readers, but our photographers literally show our readers the world.
Photographers must be there to do their work, to bear witness firsthand. They must be in the hospital I.C.U., in the scrum of the protest, at the front line of the conflict, close to the wildfire, inside the homes of the struggling parents, or wading into the floodwaters of the storm. We are the beneficiaries of their courage and their commitment, and the connections they make with others.
We get to see and better understand the world through their eyes. We get access to remote places, shuttered places, dangerous places, private places. And, while once war photographers were the ones expected to confront danger, now because of an unpredictable virus, hostility toward journalists, domestic conflict and fearsome natural disasters, an ordinary-sounding assignment can become risky.
Doug Mills submitted to hundreds of Covid tests in order to give our readers uninterrupted access to a White House in transition between two vastly different administrations. Max Whittaker prepped his house and helped his family evacuate before suiting up to cover the firefighting efforts to contain the Caldor fire that threatened his home. A routine assignment to cover a vote on Capitol Hill was transformed in an instant, and Erin Schaff found herself in the middle of a conflict. She continued to photograph after being physically assaulted by rioters. Jim Huylebroek refused to leave Afghanistan even when it was obviously the prudent thing to do, because he wanted to show the world what was transpiring during the history-making retreat of the American military and the success of the Taliban. Our photographer in Myanmar can’t even reveal his name for fear of being targeted.
But while the news focuses on tumult, life is much richer than that. We also asked our photographers to document the joy, the optimism, the curious and buoyant moments that remind us of the gobsmacking beauty of the world and all that connects us to one another. The astonishing physical command of an Olympic athlete, perfectly organized in space by a photographer’s composition. The ethereal beauty of the sea’s largest shark as it arches to be fed by a human interloper. The delicate and tender touch of a new mother, the dignity and vulnerability of a person honestly seen.
Photographers are often invisible and unacknowledged. This collection puts their voices at the center of the conversation. As much as it is a representation of the year’s events, it is also a tribute to them.
For Ashley Gilbertson, this photograph captured the intensity of the moment when a single man stood firm against a massive mob overrunning the United States Capitol.
As they turned a corner, the mob paused. A lone policeman was shouting at them to stop and turn back. Men in QAnon shirts shouted back, and another waved a Confederate flag in front of the officer. He drew his baton to fight them back, but it fell to the ground in the chaos. He unclipped the holster of his pistol and put his hand on the grip, and I put a rioter between me and him as a shield. But the officer never drew his sidearm.
His name, I would later learn, was Eugene Goodman. He acted as a diversion to draw rioters away from the Senate chamber. There weren’t many moments that we can be proud of as a nation from Jan. 6, 2021, but this is one of them.
“It was like a scene out of a movie with the chemical agent wafting through the air. It was really surreal. The guy stopped because he was so proud of taking part in this insurrection, he wanted it recorded in some way.”
— Mark Peterson
Erin Schaff is not a conflict photographer by training. Her background is in covering the Capitol. So when people got inside the Capitol, she felt like they were in her second home.
As soon as I heard the noise of rioters inside the building, I ran towards them. Every step of the way I thought, “This is about to end. Law enforcement will be here. Backup will be here.” And it just didn’t come. It was important to me to stay on the Hill that night and be there for when Congress reconvened. It was really difficult to be in the Capitol after the 6th. I don’t think I’ll ever walk through those spaces without seeing the shadows of a mob. I don’t look at my photos from those days.
“That was a moment of exhaustion. A moment unseen but universal. I’m there to show that this woman is doing it all. Even though we work outside the home, we still do the lioness’s share of household chores.”
— Brenda Ann Kenneally
“John was working at the front desk at the funeral home. This was one of the most intimate moments of his life, essentially saying goodbye to his mother. After the photo, he thanked me and he said he was so honored that it was part of this story. Everything that we do as photographers is about trust.”
— Lynsey Addario
“Because of Covid, there was no parade. So the president and first lady walked up to the North Portico, which is something we don’t typically see. And here was just this embrace that was very organic. It was like Joe Biden saying, you’re here, you’re finally here, after eight years as vice president.”
— Doug Mills
Meridith Kohut spent two weeks on the front line of the Covid-19 surge in Los Angeles County, documenting its toll on Black and Latino families.
I had been with the family of Felipe Cruz in the I.C.U. when doctors said there was nothing more they could do for him. A few weeks after he died, I visited them at home. I spent hours with them as they remembered Felipe — laughing, crying and going through old photos of him and their family. His wife cooked his favorite dinner and we all ate together. That day, I learned Felipe was an immigrant from Oaxaca, Mexico, and a father to three daughters. His family described him as always happy and laughing, always affectionate, kind and helping others.
We sat around the table together and sipped cups of Oaxacan hot chocolate as the sun set outside their kitchen window. When our cups were empty, María broke down and held her hands to her face and sobbed. Maritza jumped up to comfort her.
“Politicians were evacuated, but their staffs weren’t. They had to hide in the building. They thought they were going to die. I think a lot about the congressional staff and the Capitol police officers who still have to go to work there every day and are continually retraumatized by what they experienced.”
— Erin Schaff
“It was a pretty typical February morning. Cool and crisp. My friend Kimi had recently bought a new longboard. Kimi embodied what it felt like out on the water that day. It was great to gather safely again and be reminded that there is a lot of support for diversifying the line-up.”
— Gabriella Angotti-Jones
“A few blocks from me was a public housing development. As I was standing in its parking lot looking at the skyline, two folks came out to warm up and charge their phones. You can see the towering downtown office buildings illuminated, and neighborhoods like East Austin, which is historically underserved, were in the dark.”
— Tamir Kalifa
“One of my closest friends, Veronica, is a burlesque performer. We had talked a lot about the emotional and financial toll that the pandemic was having on her and her community of performers, and I wanted to capture that. I wanted to show the range of beauty and nuance in the burlesque scene.”
— Kholood Eid
The photographer who covers Myanmar for The New York Times cannot reveal his name. It’s too risky in a country that is on the verge of civil war.
I cannot safely tell anyone I’m a journalist. Anything sensitive you do could cause arrest and torture. I can work as long as there’s the camouflage of people and protesters on the street. As a photographer I want to have my name out there, but it’s more important for me to be able to work than to be credited. I just kept saying, I am more useful doing what I do, which is to document, to witness the events as they unfold while other people are protesting and participating in this revolution. When they started the crackdown they fired real bullets and started injuring people. That day I photographed so many dead bodies. So many wounded. And the crackdown went on until dark. That was a very deadly day. You see these young men with slingshots and homemade weapons that could barely kill a bird, facing a military. They’re fighting for their freedom and democracy.
Todd Heisler photographed New York’s service workers, so central to New York’s economy and way of life, and yet so often unseen.
I want people to look in their eyes and see beyond their uniforms and trades. They are the people that kept New York running. They are New York. I felt particularly close to these workers because I was out working so much and you develop a kinship with the people you see out in the street, especially during the pandemic when there weren’t so many people out there. These are workers who are often overlooked. Suddenly they’re deemed essential workers, and they’re behind masks and closed doors and continuing to do that work but now at risk because of Covid.
“This was the very first time anyone could get inside the facility. The son was the only one of her children who lived nearby. We were there the moment they first saw each other. He immediately just completely broke down. She, too, was really excited to see him.”
— Bryan Anselm
Daniel Berehulak has photographed refugees and immigration all over the world. This year, he was at the border between the U.S. and Mexico.
One of our contacts mentioned that the Americans were doing mass deportations, they were flying people from Brownsville to El Paso and not telling them anything along the way, then putting them on a bus and walking them back over the international bridge. When journalists met them at the crossing point they asked, “ Where are we?” When someone answered, “Mexico,” it hit them that they had been brought back over the border and that the whole journey, of borrowing money and dealing with coyotes and smugglers. had been for nothing. Their dreams were shattered and they were back in Mexico.
Sandy Kim, when asked to portray love, photographed herself with her parents. They had been there for her during her recovery from addiction.
I was an opiate addict and during that time I just pushed my family away. I was ashamed. The photo is showing me back in the family. I got clean two and a half years ago. For this dinner, I said to my parents, can we just act natural? I put it on a timer and they basically just did what was natural. My mother was a chef so she loves cooking, and I’m the only child. She just wants me to taste everything and be sure I try all her dishes. She was having me taste a fried fish, a dish kings and queens used to eat.
Atul Loke was in Delhi, waiting outside of hospitals, seeing people gasping for air, needing oxygen and waiting in ambulances.
Somebody mentioned that there was a mass cremation on the outskirts of South Delhi. I didn’t know until I got there what the scale was. Normally, traditional cremation grounds will have eight to 10 spaces where you can cremate the person. It takes almost two or three hours to burn completely, and then it needs time to cool off. Then people collect the ashes and do their rituals according to their faith. I think there were 50, 60 dead bodies burning. The traditional cremation land was full so they converted the adjoining parking lot into a mass cremation ground. There was no space to even walk around, and still dead bodies were coming. I went to a house and asked if I could go up to the terrace. That’s when I shot this picture. The fires were becoming more visible because it was getting dark.
When Yagazie Emezi went to the Niger Delta in May, the oil from a spill several months earlier was still present, slicking her boat and staining it brown.
The Niger Delta is beautiful. You can only imagine how much more beautiful it was without the devastation of oil pollution. In some areas you can tell there were mangroves, but there is nothing there now. I have heard stories of freshwater dolphins once upon a time in this area, how the water was blue. You also hear stories of how the fish were once plentiful. As a witness I can say it is devastating. But I do not know what it’s like to pull up these nets filled with mud and very little fish. Unless our livelihoods rely on fishing, we can’t understand the full level of devastation they must feel. I wanted to capture them in the act of pulling up their nets. Natural nets for fishing are not this color. Even though the nets have been cleaned and mended, they are stained by past oil spills.
“This was in her studio. You see the work above. I think there’s a hint of a printer, some rolled photographs. I wanted to create a scene with the focus on the artist herself, but also to give hints of the work she actually does.”
— Lyle Ashton Harris
“I live in the Arctic. I always try to reveal unseen stories, to create a sense of wonder. I hope my work will help strengthen the presence of women in science and environmental photojournalism, where the feminine perspective has been underrepresented.
— Anna Filipova
Victor J. Blue went to Minnesota to cover the trial of the police officer accused in George Floyd’s death. Then, the police killed another Black man, Daunte Wright.
Daunte Wright’s mother was visiting the memorial that had sprung up right where he was pulled over by the police. It was a place she would commune with family and friends.
It seemed to give her a measure of comfort to engage with the people who were so upset and enraged over her son’s killing. I was struck by how she navigated this role she was thrust into, as a symbol of this movement. She appeared many, many times with other families who had lost children to police violence. Not just the emblematic ones, but families that had received little public attention. She handled it with a level of grace I found kind of amazing.
“I had a baby at the height of Covid and my family was unable to travel to Los Angeles to be with me. In April my parents held her for the first time. She is wearing a dress I wore as a baby. One of my mom’s best friends made that dress.”
— Bethany Mollenkof
Kiana Hayeri has lived in Kabul for more than seven years, and has covered a lot of bombings. But this one, outside of a school, was probably the hardest.
The day before this photo was taken, there was a triple explosion outside of a school in Kabul City. Because I am a woman I was able to enter the space without causing too much distraction. There was a humming sound, which was the sound the women were making crying quietly. But the room was silent otherwise. At this mosque they were burying two girls who were killed the day before. The sister arrived late because she had passed out earlier that morning, so they had taken her to the hospital. The area around the school is one of the poorest areas of Kabul.
“This photo is one of the most difficult scenes that I photographed in the last war in May 2021, because the people in the photo are my relatives. It is Mahmoud Tolba, 15 years old, and he is the son of my cousin. Nagham Tolba, who embraces Mahmoud, is his only sister, hugging his body and crying. Mahmoud was walking in the street when the bombing occurred.”
— Samar Abu Elouf
Adam Ferguson went to Mexico to make portraits of migrants who were waiting and hoping to enter the U.S.
The subjects are all making the exposure themselves, so they are collaborative portraits, which is a technique that has been used in the fine art space but not often within the context of journalism. I wanted to give these migrants who don’t have any agency and are in these precarious situations fleeing violence and poverty — I wanted to see them in a quieter and more intimate space. Instead of being depicted as victims, I wanted them to participate. I used a medium format camera and cable release, and explained that they’d be in control of the moment of capture. It was about me stepping back a bit and giving them a stake in that process, and I thought that would be an interesting way for an audience to engage with the migration issue.
Finbarr O’Reilly found that the biggest challenge in covering the conflict in Ethiopia in the northern Tigray region was one of access.
Since the war had started about nine months prior to our visit in June and July, the government of Ethiopia had imposed communications and media blackouts. There was no journalistic way to verify reports of atrocities, mass killings, massacres and widespread sexual violence by Ethiopian and allied Eritrean forces fighting the Tigray and rebel army. But we managed to get in to cover elections and traveled north to Tigray, not expecting to have much more access than journalists had had up to that point, which is very limited. But as it turned out, the war tide was turning in favor of the Tigray. They had inflicted a series of catastrophic losses on the Ethiopian Army. And the Ethiopian Army retreated, pulled back and called the unilateral ceasefire. We could actually go in and confirm at these prisoner of war camps that there were indeed thousands of Ethiopian troops that had been captured, and were being held in the mountains.
For decades, the Canadian government swept up the children of Indigenous people and put them in residential schools to wipe out their culture. Amber Bracken photographed the aftermath.
The Kamloops community had been doing its own investigation into the location of unmarked graves at residential schools, and had found 215 little persons that had not been accounted for. Those outfits represent the children who died from abuse or neglect when they were in the residential schools. The nation decided to put in these crosses. It was right next to a very busy freeway. It had been gloomy and rainy all day when I was on my way out there. By the time we got to the highway there was a rainbow. The end of the rainbow was in the orchard where the bodies were found. You could feel the rawness of the moment for people who came to pray or offer respects.
“This was the third day after the Surfside collapse. The sun was just rising. These women were reading Jewish psalms alongside the barrier near the remains of the building. Throughout the day you would see people crying or dropping off flowers.”
— Scott McIntyre
“I visited four proms across California. I was hoping to work on something joyful, showing communities coming back to life. So many running hugs, where they would run and jump into each other’s arms. I saw people grabbing wallflowers and bringing them onto the dance floor. The joy was infectious.”
— Maggie Shannon
“It was a more celebratory, happy, prideful vibe this year, whereas in 2020 it was more of a heavy protest sort of vibe. I was just trying to do my best to depict that feeling. There was more dancing and smiles and happiness, as opposed to clenched fists and signs.”
— Kenny Holston
“New York City was feeling pretty optimistic about what the summer was going to look like. We wanted to encapsulate this feeling of excitement, about what happens from dusk to dawn. People were dressing so much more colorfully, even compared to prepandemic. Then Delta arrived. It wasn’t the summer we were expecting.”
— Gabriela Bhaskar
Tyler Hicks went to Afghanistan when the Taliban were beginning to close in on larger cities but were nowhere close to Kabul.
This photograph was taken at a checkpoint where Afghan police were inspecting vehicles arriving from nearby Taliban controlled villages. As cars were stopped and checked I turned and saw that a family who was fleeing that area was packed into a car with a girl looking out the back window, back toward where they had come from. I could see the concern in her face and to me that’s what stood out about this moment. Although only one person is seen in this photograph, her face says everything about what was soon to come. You can always tell what’s coming by the mood of the population. There was an urgency among the people that was obvious. This is when it became clear to me that there would be no turning back the events that followed.
“It’s very difficult to take photos of people dealing with the heat. There are these tropes of kids playing in water. I wanted something different. This woman was very kind to let me in during Covid. It was 114 degrees. By the time she knew they needed another air conditioner, there weren’t any.”
— Tailyr Irvine
“You can tell by the faces how powerful the feeling was, how deep they were feeling the murder of their president. That was one of the moments when I felt the sadness of the Haitian people.”
— Federico Rios
Justin J Wee has been a longtime fan of Lorde. He has a tattoo with the lyrics from her song “Team.”
I was listening to her perform in Sydney when she sang that song. I felt so safe in that space.
And that was the moment that I decided to come out to my family.
This image was made in a studio. I had two big 4-by-8 sheets of plexiglass rigged by crazy stands, and then I collaborated with Sunnie Kim, a florist, to create this meadow. Lorde’s new album, “Solar Power,” is a lot about the sun, about nature. I put a yellow gel on the backlight. She has sound-to-color synesthesia, so when she hears music, she sees color. I wanted Lorde to feel the care we had all put into making this photo together.
I knew I would lose money on this shoot and that’s OK with me. For me to take a photograph of my hero and to be able to do it in exactly the way I wanted to do it is priceless.
“It was special to me because I’m from Tokyo. The streets were filled with people. But at the venue, there were no spectators. It was so quiet. I shot this from a rooftop that is popular with young people. I saw them reflected on the safety glass and thought that might be kind of interesting.”
— Hiroko Masuike
“I visited five county fairs in Wisconsin. I love seeing the bond the kids have with their animals, and the livestock auctions are a celebration of their work. The agriculture exhibitions are really interesting because there are these unique, organic crops, all grown by the next generation of farmers.”
— Erinn Springer
Jim Huylebroeck had lived in Kabul for seven years. The takeover by the Taliban was the story of a lifetime. There was no way he was leaving.
There were rumors that Kabul would fall. The police and military started laying down their weapons. The president had fled. We went to the west of Kabul where the Taliban were pushing in, and when we arrived there were crowds of people lining the streets, cheering them on. Seeing that kind of support in the capital was just really something. We jumped back in the car with our driver and then we saw this Humvee, which is an icon of the war. It is America. And there is the Taliban sitting on top. I’m like, “Stop the car, I need to get this frame.” I jump in front of this Humvee, which is stuck in traffic like everyone else. I shoot a photo. By this time, I had gotten the confidence that it was OK, that the Taliban wanted Western journalists to continue doing their jobs.
“This was the first Friday prayers after the Taliban takeover, in Kabul. At the end, Khalil Haqqani stood up and gave a speech. It was totally surreal; the guy carried a $5 million bounty on his head. But there he was, cradling his American-made rifle, celebrating the Taliban victory. The war was over.”
— Victor Blue
Max Whittaker lives close to where the Caldor fire began. He had to suddenly evacuate his family and then come back to cover the fire.
I’ve covered wildfires in California for 20 years. I’m totally equipped. I’m dressed like a firefighter; I wear all the same safety equipment. These fires are fast-moving and hard to keep a handle on. This was the second time the Caldor fire exploded, and at that particular time it was defying all expert predictions. The first time it blew up was when we evacuated, and then it slowed down and appeared to be beginning to get under control. But unfortunately the winds picked up, and it moved to terrain that funneled it toward Lake Tahoe. This firefighter is monitoring the house to make sure it does not burn and is keeping a defensible perimeter around it.
“Working in Haiti can be hard and complicated during the best of times. This time there was an earthquake and a tropical storm. This used to be a church. People had gathered there to celebrate the life of someone who had passed. Chairs, hats and bits of clothing were scattered throughout the grounds.”
— Adriana Zehbrauskas
“This photograph was taken with a drone, which offered the best perspective of how close the human population was to white sharks on Cape Cod. It was nerve-racking to watch a shark swim so close to people and not have the ability to let them know.”
— Tyler Hicks
Hannah Morales did her first underwater shoot to capture images of the whale sharks that come every day at dawn for shrimp.
The small town of Tan-Awan, in Cebu, built what became the largest non-captive whale shark tourism interaction in the world. Fishermen from the town lure the whale sharks by feeding them shrimp. This guarantees a wildlife encounter for tourists, who over the last 10 years have brought money, jobs and industry to the town. Because of the whale sharks, there is now a high school in the town. I met a fisherman who was finally able to build himself a concrete house instead of one made of straw. But conservationists warn that the feeding alters the natural behavior of this endangered species. When the pandemic ended the presence of tourists, the town went into debt so it could continue feeding the whale sharks. Losing them would mean the money would never come back.
“After the photo op with the winner and the trophy, I hung out a little longer. I was following her and someone said, “Let me have your cup!” And she said, “No!” She grabbed it like it was a little baby. That’s why I call myself a moment thief. You’ve got to wait and grab it.”
— Michelle V. Agins
Hilary Swift’s brother is a firefighter in New York and he had friends who had died from 9/11-related illnesses. She wanted to know more.
I brought up this idea of doing a portrait project and ended up photographing 23 people.
I was 8 years old when 9/11 happened. Even though I wasn’t there, it shaped my life. It shaped our entire generation’s life. The fact that people are still getting sick from this is really scary. The war is still going on for them. The attack on the country is still a part of their everyday lives. I thought it was important to talk about that and to highlight the struggles that these people face every day. It was hard. It was very sad. There are a lot of bitter feelings and a lot of angry feelings. The E.P.A. told people it was safe to be down there when it was really not safe to be down there. But they were also so kind to me. The people who are sick don’t want to be forgotten.
Dasani was 11 and her family’s housing situation was precarious when Ruth Fremson first photographed her.
She was 20 when we met again to take these photos. I hadn’t told her to wear lavender. I didn’t know her hair was going to be blonde. Yellow and purple are complementary colors. The color was perfect. She always had a beautiful face. So alive. So many expressions play out on her face. We spent the bulk of an afternoon walking around Brooklyn together coming up with a portrait that felt right to both of us. What struck me was that she had her mother’s and her sisters’ names tattooed on her arm and her chest. That’s what Dasani is all about. I look at her and see the power of family. The strength of family ties is remarkable. That is something that stood out a long, long time ago.
“I honestly felt I was in my dream Met Gala every time I was in front of one of these magical alien beings. I showed up with four backgrounds I had painted myself the weekend before and had a whole stage outside. I like taking things outside of their context.”
— Camila Falquez
“I was traveling with UNICEF through this very flooded area of South Sudan. It was the first time people had been given masks and they were trying them on. There is so much flooding, malaria, hunger. Covid is not first and foremost on peoples’ minds.”
— Lynsey Addario
When the new statue went up, Sarahbeth Maney could feel the bond among those who showed up, and its importance for the community.
Franklin has a deep-rooted history of racism and there’s so much history from the Civil War in Tennessee. To see both sides of that history displayed that day was special. The crowd was also diverse, which was surprising to see – the different age groups and backgrounds of the people that showed up that day to show their support for the Black community. I had just recently moved to Virginia from the Bay Area, and I felt that, walking through Franklin, I was absorbing so much Civil War history. I wasn’t used to that in California. That was a different experience for me, especially as a mixed-race Black woman. The statue was erected in front of a building where enslaved people were auctioned, so in a way it was a moment of rewriting, reclaiming and rebuilding that history, which was powerful. I think it serves as a metaphor for something bigger.
“Dinah Shore Weekend is a yearly queer women’s festival. I had a great time sneaking around and taking photos and trying not to disturb or make people feel uncomfortable. I thought these two looked so gorgeous. They gave me a fierce, powerful glance and for a moment we connected.”
— Michelle Groskopf
Damon Winter watched the polar bears waiting for the sea to freeze so they could hunt seals on the ice.
The warmer it gets, the longer they wait for the ice. Every day they wait, they lose body mass. If the freeze happens too late, the first-year cubs can starve to death because there are not enough nutrients on shore. If they’re off the ice for a certain number of days, it’s really detrimental.
The whole story is really sad, knowing the fate that awaits them in the years to come. The writing is on the wall for them. And for this way of life. They’ll have to keep pushing farther and farther north. I was photographing this from a rented pickup truck. You can’t get out and walk because polar bears could be behind a rock. You could get attacked. You don’t get a full sense of how large and powerful and intimidating these creatures can be. They look so soft and fluffy.
James Hill went to a border in Belarus where migrants hoped to get into the European Union.
That day the migrants had tried to force their way across the border into Poland. They threw stones and sticks and put big pieces of wood over the razor wire. They were hosed down by water cannons from the Polish side. In the hours afterward, they made camp by the border, getting firewood and setting all these fires. It was like a scene from the cinema, but of course it was very real. It was a very bruising day. You see the weariness of losing this battle. People from all over the world are trying to get into Europe and they’re taking different routes. With so many migrants trying to get in, there are always people looking to profit. Many of the migrants said that they had spent more than $5,000. It’s a dramatic human story but it’s also one of big business and geopolitics.
Amr Alfiky was asked to shoot the New York City marathon in the Bay Ridge neighborhood.
I was stoked. I hang out in Bay Ridge a lot. There is a big Arab community. People look familiar. Sometimes I get tired of speaking English all the time. I was looking for a place to shoot, a restaurant or coffee shop, and I found this place. I was searching for the right place because I wanted to show human interaction. After I took the essential photos, I went back and the owner and a bunch of friends were outside cheering and chanting and smoking hookah.The first two waves had just passed. There’s a little bit of symmetry and human interaction. That was so New York. So Bay Ridge. So Brooklyn.
“I photographed him in a big chair in a room that was like an auxiliary living room. I wanted something intimate, with him leaning back or lying down, because you’re vulnerable in that position. It feels personal.”
— Daniel Dorsa
“Every Thanksgiving my family goes for a hunt. That’s my father, my brother and my nephew. We were hunting for white-tailed bucks on the Flathead Reservation where I grew up. We are Salish and Kootenai. We’re not gathering because of the pilgrims. We’re gathering in spite of them.”
— Tailyr Irvine