Conflict photography of Benjamin Lowy

Benjamin Lowy, a well known photojournalist, creates snaps of great beauty while working in the deepest corners of the planet where conflict reigns. For the Sydney Writers’ Festival as well as the Head On Photography Festival, Lowy speaks with Pip Cummings about art, beauty, and ethics in photojournalism.

Even when Benjamin Lowy was a kid, he used to go to New York’s Jones Beach to see the 3.5 metre swells which had been sickenby Hurricane Gloria. He told that he ran right into the ocean and that probably explains a little bit about who he is.

33 year old Lowy is a well known conflict photographer, whose pictures from  Afghanistan, Libya, Iraq and Darfur have been hailed by the Magnum Foundation Emergency fund, World Press Photo as well as the ICP Infinity Award for Photojournalism. His snaps were also exhibited at San Francisco’s Museum of Modern Art and the Tate Modern.

His love for photography was discovered by accident. Both his mom and grandmother were good painters and Benjamin always knew he really wanted to work in arts field. He told that he was also a kind of daydreamer, always reading science fiction, looking at comic books as a child.

He was studying to be a comic book illustrator and he often relied on drawing figures from photography books and one day he pulled well known photojournalist James Nachtwey’s Inferno and the die was cast. He told that he sat there for several hours and just looked at those snaps and it altered something inside of me.


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