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Princess of Asturias Awards 06/12/2024

Magnum Photos, Princess of Asturias Award for Concord


International photo agency Magnum Photos has been granted the 2024 Princess of Asturias Award for Concord, as announced today by the Jury responsible for conferring said Award.

The Jury for this Award –convened by the Princess of Asturias Foundation– was chaired by Adrián Barbón Rodríguez, President of the Principality of Asturias, and composed of Esther Alcocer Koplowitz, Marchioness of Casa Peñalver, Fernando de Almansa Moreno-Barreda, Viscount of Castillo de Almansa, José Ramón Álvarez Rendueles, Ernesto Antolin Arribas, Antonio Brufau Niubó, Alfredo Canteli Fernández, Juan Cofiño González, Manuel Contreras Caro, Sol Daurella Comadrán, Isidro Fainé Casas, Ana Isabel Fernández Álvarez, José Antonio Fernández Carbajal, Ana Fernández Manrique, Pedro Luis Fernández Pérez, José Antonio Fernández Rivero, Enrique Fernández Rodríguez, Luis Fernández-Vega Sanz, Sabino García Vallina, Ignacio Garralda Ruiz de Velasco, Jaime Gorbeña Yllera, Antonio Huertas Mejías, Alicia Koplowitz Romero de Juséu, Laureano Lourido Artime, Pedro Martín Barón, Adolfo Menéndez Menéndez, Enrique Miñarro Viseras, Carmen Moriyón Entrialgo, Carlos Navalpotro Fuster, Mercedes Oblanca Rojo, María del Pino Calvo-Sotelo, Matías Rodríguez Inciarte, Juan Sánchez-Calero Guilarte, Manuel Villa-Cellino Torre, Ignacio Ybarra Aznar and Pedro de Silva Cienfuegos-Jovellanos (as acting secretary).

This candidature was put forward by Pablo Gil Cuevas, member of the Jury for the 2024 Princess of Asturias Award for Literature.

Magnum Photos was created in 1947 by Endre Ernö Friedmann, aka Robert Capa, who materialized his project of founding a photojournalism agency as a cooperative whose members had total independence in order to retain the copyright on their works and market them. Spanish photographer Cristina de Middel has been the agency’s president since last year. It has its main offices in Paris, New York and London, as well as a network of contributing photographers.

Considered one of the most prestigious international photographic agencies in the world, its four founding partners and followers of the German pioneers of photojournalism, Robert Capa, Henri Cartier-Bresson, George Rodger and David Seymour, have gone down in history as the fathers of this discipline. The cooperative’s list of past and present members includes some of the most important photojournalists, whose images have appeared in newspapers such as The New York Times, Le Monde, Le Figaro, The Sunday Times, The Guardian and Corriere della Sera and magazines such as Paris Match, National Geographic, Fortune, Life y Geo..Most of them have had solo exhibitions in institutions around the world, such as the National Library of Paris and the Museum of Modern Art in New York (MoMA), among others. Boasting over a million photos, the agency’s archives include: the only existing photos of the Normandy landings, the work of Robert Capa; snapshots of Malcolm X’s speeches, captured by Eve Arnold; and images of Fidel Castro’s entry into Havana in 1959, taken by Burt Glinn.

In 2007, the agency created the Magnum Foundation, aimed at providing fellowships to photographers and preserving its historical archive. It also began to work with The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, with which an international team of photographers travelled to nine countries to document the effects of antiretroviral treatments on AIDS patients. The result was “Access to Life”, a traveling exhibition that opened in 2008 in Washington and could be seen in Madrid, Oslo, Rome and Oakland. While retaining the copyright, Magnum sold its collection of printed photographs in 2010 to computer magnate Michael Dell, who later bequeathed the archive to the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas for its preservation and cataloguing. The agency is also committed to mentoring independent photojournalists and visual storytellers, for whom it organizes educational activities. In the exhibitions in which it regularly participates or organizes, the agency shows special interest in addressing social issues such as sustainability, offsetting the carbon footprint and gender equality. In 2022, the year in which it celebrated its 75th anniversary, it focused on the armed conflict in Ukraine via initiatives such as the launch of a sale of photographs about armed conflicts, the profits of which were destined to the International Committee of the Red Cross (2012 Prince of Asturias Award for International Cooperation) to support the protection of life and human dignity in Ukraine and other places affected by war.

Magnum photographers have received awards such as the World Press Photo of the Year (Netherlands), the W. Eugene Smith Award for Humanistic Photography ( USA) and the Foreign Press Club Award (USA). Magnum Photos received the 2020 Leadership Award from the International Photography Hall of Fame and Museum (USA). It also awards the Inge Morath Prize.

As stated in the Statutes of the Foundation, the Princess of Asturias Awards are aimed at rewarding “the scientific, technical, cultural, social and humanitarian work carried out at an international level by individuals, institutions or groups of individuals or institutions”. In line with these principles, the Princess of Asturias Award for Concord is to be granted to “the work of defending and advancing human rights, as well as promoting and protecting peace, freedom, solidarity, world heritage and, in general, the progress of humanity”.

This year, a total of 38 candidatures comprising 19 nationalities were put forward for the Award for Concord.

This is the last of the eight Princess of Asturias Awards to be bestowed in what is now their forty-fourth year. Previously, the Princess of Asturias Award for the Arts was granted to singer-songwriter Joan Manuel Serrat; the Award for Communication and Humanities went to Franco-Iranian cartoonist, film director and painter Marjane Satrapi; the Award for Sports was conferred on badminton player Carolina Marín; the Award for Social Sciences went to Canadian academic and essayist Michael Ignatieff; the Award for Literature was conferred on Romanian poet Ana Blandiana; the Award for International Cooperation went to the Organization of Ibero-American States for Education, Science and Culture (OEI); and the Award for Technical and Scientific Research was jointly conferred on physician Daniel J. Drucker (Canada), molecular biologist Jeffrey M. Friedman (USA), endocrinologist Joel F. Habener, (USA), chemist Jens Juul Holst (Denmark) and chemist Svetlana Mojsov (North Macedonia and USA).

As is customary, the presentation of the Princess of Asturias Awards will take place in October in a solemn ceremony presided over by Their Majesties The King and Queen, accompanied by Their Royal Highnesses Leonor, Princess of Asturias, and Infanta Sofía of Spain.

Each Princess of Asturias Award comprises a Joan Miró sculpture symbolizing the Award, a diploma, an insignia and a cash prize of fifty thousand euros.

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