Sebastião Salgado: A photojournalist like no other

Sebastião Salgado is one of the most renowned and accomplished photojournalists in the world. He has covered many different stories throughout his illustrious career, but his work documenting the human experience has earned him numerous awards. Learn more about this fascinating artist and what drives him to capture the human condition in all its forms.

Sebastião Salgado
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Early Life

Sebastião Salgado was born on February 8, 1944, in Aimorés, Brazil. The only son of a cattle rancher, he was raised in the small town of Aimorés in the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil.

When he was younger, his father wanted him to be a lawyer. However, he decided to go down another path and study economics at São Paulo University instead. In 1968, after earning his master’s degree in the field, he started working as an economist for the Ministry of Finance (1968–69). At this time, he also joined the popular movement against Brazil’s military government. Due to his political radicalism, Salgado was exiled from Brazil in August 1969.

Salgado and his wife escaped to France where he resume studying at the University of Paris. While working as an economist for the International Coffee Organization in Rwanda, he took his first photographs in 1971 which led him to learn photography. By 1973, he became a freelance photojournalist.

What is photojournalism?

Photojournalism is a form of journalism that chronicles events through the use of photographs. It is an important tool for documenting and telling stories about current events, as well as providing historical context. Photojournalists often work in difficult and dangerous conditions to get the best possible shots of their subjects.


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Sebastião Salgado’s career as a photojournalist

Sebastião Salgado
Sebastião Salgado’s coverage of the Kuwait oil fires in 1991. © Sebastião Salgado

Sebastião Salgado has gone on to have a very successful career as a photojournalist, photographer, and author. His work has been featured in numerous exhibitions and publications around the world. He is best known for his social documentary photography, which often focuses on immigration, workers’ rights, land rights, environmental issues, war zones, and human resiliency in the face of adversity.

In 1994, he founded the Amazonas Foundation with his wife Lélia Wanick Salgado to help protect the rainforest and its indigenous peoples. In 1998, he founded Instituto Terra to reforest 1,500 acres (607 hectares) of land that had been degraded by years of cattle ranching near his hometown of Aimorés. Sebastião Salgado is widely respected for using his photographic work to raise awareness about important social and environmental issues around the world.

Why Salgado is one of the most important photojournalists of our time

Sebastião Salgado
© Sebastião Salgado

Salgado’s work is important because it provides a unique perspective on some of the most pressing issues of our time. His photos offer a glimpse into the lives of people who are often forgotten or ignored by the rest of the world. They also serve as a reminder of the humanity that we all share.

Salgado’s work has earned him numerous awards, including the Prix du Luxembourg and the World Press Photo of the Year. He was also named a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador in 2001. In 2004, he was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by the International Center of Photography. In 2013, he was presented with the National Geographic Society’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

Salgado is a true master of his craft. His work is a testament to the power of photography to change the world.

Sebastião Salgado
Sebastião Salgado – Brazilian farm workers
Sebastião Salgado
© Sebastião Salgado
Sebastião Salgado
© Sebastião Salgado
Sebastião Salgado
© Sebastião Salgado
Sebastião Salgado
© Sebastião Salgado
Sebastião Salgado: A photojournalist like no other
© Sebastião Salgado

 

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