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A timely, panoramic portrait of China by Magnum's legendary photographers, spanning the pre-revolutionary years to contemporary China

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Many of Magnum’s most renowned photographers, beginning with Robert Capa and Henri Cartier-Bresson on assignment in the 1930s, have photographed China, returning time and again, their fascination growing in line with China’s burgeoning accessibility and international influence. Magnum China – both an outstanding photobook and a fascinating social history – illustrates the agency’s evolving relationship with China to give a visually rich, informed photographic account of the country, its people and the changes witnessed over the last nine decades.

Chronologically organized to present key periods in the development of the modern state and its associated territories, Magnum China presents in-depth portfolios by individual photographers, accompanied by introductory commentaries on the featured projects, and group selections illustrating the diversity of Magnum’s interaction with the region. Supplemented with introductory essays by Jonathan Fenby, historical timelines, lists of photographers’ travels and a fold-out map of China, Magnum China offers detailed and insightful socio-political, geographical and historical context to complement the outstanding photography of some of the world’s finest documentary, art and street photographers.

Features work by forty photographers:
Abbas • Christopher Anderson • Eve Arnold • Olivia Arthur • Bruno Barbey • Jonas Bendiksen • Ian Berry • Werner Bischof • Michael Christopher Brown • René Burri • Robert Capa • Henri Cartier-Bresson • Chien-Chi Chang • Carl De Keyzer • Raymond Depardon • Carolyn Drake • Thomas Dworzak • Elliott Erwitt • Martine Franck • Stuart Franklin • Bruce Gilden • Burt Glinn • Jim Goldberg • Harry Gruyaert • Hiroshi Hamaya • Thomas Hoepker • Philip Jones Griffiths • Guy Le Querrec • Lu-Nan • Steve McCurry • Alex Majoli • Constantine Manos • Inge Morath • Martin Parr • Paolo Pellegrin • Gueorgui Pinkhassov • Marc Riboud • Alec Soth • Chris Steele-Perkins • Patrick Zachmann

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'Impressive ... an important book for anyone interested in China and its place in the world, told by historians, social commentators and artists'
Black & White Photography Magazine

'Salutes Magnum’s photojournalistic achievement, as well as providing a valuable record of the country’s endlessly fascinating, often heartbreaking, 20th-century story'

'Magnum's photos provide a panoramic portrait of China and its people through the changes and upheavals in its recent history'
BBC in Pictures

'Timelines, foldout maps, lists of Magnum photographers’ migratory routes and essays by Sinologist Jonathan Fenby give this already large and beautifully produced book added authority'
The World of Interiors

'Impressive … A visually powerful cultural and political history'
The Lady

'Reveals not just how much China, but also Magnum Photos, and photography in general, have changed … as Zheng Ziyu remarks in the introduction "creating new ways of seeing"'
RPS Journal

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Product Information

Book Details

Format: PLC with half-height jacket

Size: 29.5 x 24.5 cm

Extent: 376 pp

Publication date: 4 October 2018

ISBN: 9780500544549

Contents List

Introduction • 1. A Time of War • 2. The Mao Zedong Years • 3. The Deng Xiaoping Years • 4. The Era of a Global Superpower

About the Author

Colin Pantall has written and photographed for a wide range of publications, including The British Journal of Photography, Foam and The Far Eastern Economic Review.

Zheng Ziyu is a photo editor, curator and researcher of visual culture based in Guangzhou, China. He has held positions as senior photo editor at the Southern Metropolis Daily and as managing editor of their Vision Weekly newspaper.

Jonathan Fenby CBE, has been the editor of the Observer and the South China Morning Post. He is the author of twenty books, nine on China and others on World War II and France.