Peter van Agtmael

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Peter van Agtmael (born 1981) is a documentary photographer based in New York. Since 2006 he has concentrated on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and their consequences in the United States.[1][2][3][4][5] He is a member of Magnum Photos.[6]

Van Agtmael's photo essays have been published in The New York Times Magazine,[7][8] Time,[9][10] The New Yorker[11] and The Guardian.[12] He has published three books.[13][14][15] His first, 2nd Tour Hope I Don't Die, was published by Photolucida as a prize for winning their Critical Mass Book Award.[16][17] He received a W. Eugene Smith Grant from the W. Eugene Smith Memorial Fund[18] to complete his second book, Disco Night Sept. 11. His third, Buzzing at the Sill, was published by Kehrer Verlag in 2016.[19] He has twice received awards from World Press Photo,[20][21] the Infinity Award for Young Photographer from the International Center of Photography[22] and a grant from the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting,[23]

Life and work[edit]

Van Agtmael was born in Washington D.C.[24] and grew up in Bethesda, Maryland.[25] He studied history at Yale,[24] graduating in 2003. He became a nominee member of Magnum Photos in 2008, an associate member in 2011, and a full member in 2013.[6][26][27]

After graduation he received a fellowship to live in China for a year and document the consequences of the Three Gorges Dam.[28] He has covered HIV-positive refugees in South Africa;[3] the Asian tsunami in 2005;[3] humanitarian relief efforts after Hurricane Katrina's effects on New Orleans in 2005[28] and after the 2010 Haiti earthquake,[29] the filming of the first season of TV series Treme on location in New Orleans in 2010;[12] the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010,[9] Hurricane Sandy in 2012 and its aftermath,[11] Nabi Salih and Halamish in the West Bank in 2013[8] and the 2014 Israel–Gaza conflict[7] and its aftermath.[10]

Since 2006 he has concentrated on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and their consequences in the United States.[1] He first visited Iraq in 2006 at age 24 and has returned to Iraq and Afghanistan a number of times, embedded with US military troops.[1] Later he continued to investigate the effects of those wars within the US.[13] In 2007 his portfolio from Iraq and Afghanistan won the Monograph Award (softbound) in Photolucida's Critical Mass Book Award.[16][17] As part of the prize Photolucida published his first book, 2nd Tour, Hope I Don’t Die. With work made between January 2006 and December 2008,[30] this "is a young photojournalist’s firsthand experience: the wars’ effects on him, on the soldiers and on the countries involved."[1] The 2012 W. Eugene Smith Grant for Humanistic Photography provided $30,000 to work on his second book,[30] Disco Night Sept. 11, which "chronicles the lives of the soldiers he has met in the field and back home."[13]


Publications by van Agtmael[edit]

  • 2nd Tour Hope I Don't Die. Portland, OR: Photolucida, 2009. ISBN 978-1934334072.
  • Disco Night Sept. 11. Brooklyn: Red Hook, 2014. ISBN 978-0984195428.
  • Buzzing at the Sill. Heidelberg, Germany: Kehrer Verlag, 2016. ISBN 978-3868287363.

Publications with contributions by van Agtmael[edit]


Exhibitions with others[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d Koppel, Niko (3 November 2009). "Showcase: '2nd Tour, Hope I Don't Die'". The New York Times. Retrieved 16 January 2015.
  2. ^ Herbert, Bob (24 August 2009). "The Ultimate Burden". The New York Times. Retrieved 16 January 2015.
  3. ^ a b c Bayley, Bruno (15 May 2013). "Peter van Agtmael Won't Deny the Strange Allure of War". Vice. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  4. ^ Glaviano, Alessia (30 May 2014). "Peter van Agtmael". Vogue Italia. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  5. ^ Jacobs, Harrison (4 August 2014). "These Photos show the Harsh Reality of War in Iraq and Afghanistan". Business Insider. Retrieved 16 January 2015.
  6. ^ a b "Magnum Photos appoints new full members – British Journal of Photography". Retrieved 2018-04-30.
  7. ^ a b Rudoren, Jodi (28 August 2014). "On the Ground in Israel and Gaza: Two photographers capture scenes from the most recent outbreak of war". The New York Times. Retrieved 19 January 2015.
  8. ^ a b "The Resisters". The New York Times. 17 March 2013. Retrieved 19 January 2015.
  9. ^ a b "Exclusive Photos: The Oil Spill Spreads". Time. Retrieved 19 January 2015.
  10. ^ a b Vick, Karl (24 November 2014). "Inside Gaza with Photographer Peter van Agtmael". Time. Retrieved 19 January 2015.
  11. ^ a b Curtis, Elissa (5 February 2013). "Staten Island in the Wake of Sandy". The New Yorker. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  12. ^ a b Simon, David (4 May 2010). "Behind-the-scenes photographs of David Simon's new drama, 'Treme'". The Guardian. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  13. ^ a b c Laurent, Olivier (13 May 2014). "Peter van Agtmael's Disco Night Sept 11". British Journal of Photography. Retrieved 16 January 2015.
  14. ^ "Peter van Agtmael's Journey Through War". Time. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  15. ^ Rosenberg, David (17 June 2014). "Life through the Eyes of a War Photographer". Slate. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  16. ^ a b c "Critical Mass Books: 2nd Tour Hope I Don't Die". Photolucida. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  17. ^ a b c "Critical Mass Winners: Findings, Cage Call & Perfectible Worlds". Photo-Eye. 1 October 2008. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  18. ^ a b "2012: Peter van Agtmael". W. Eugene Smith Memorial Fund. Retrieved 16 January 2015.
  19. ^ "Peter van Agtmael - Fotografie - Bücher - Kehrer Verlag". Retrieved 13 February 2018.
  20. ^ a b "2006, Peter van Agtmael, 2nd prize, General News stories". World Press Photo. Retrieved 16 January 2015.
  21. ^ a b "2014, Observed Portraits, 2nd prize stories, Peter van Agtmael". World Press Photo. Retrieved 16 January 2015.
  22. ^ a b "Peter van Agtmael". International Center of Photography. Retrieved 16 January 2015.
  23. ^ a b "Peter van Agtmael". Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting. Retrieved 16 January 2015.
  24. ^ a b Hedges, Chris (4 January 2010). "The Pictures of War You Aren't Supposed to See". Truthdig. Retrieved 16 January 2015.
  25. ^ "A Photographer's Unfiltered Account of the Iraq War". The New York Times. 15 May 2013. Retrieved 19 January 2015.
  26. ^ Popham, Peter (9 December 2012). "Young Magnum: The hotshots ready to take their place in history". The Independent. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  27. ^ Murg, Stephanie (9 July 2013). "Magnum Photos Adds Olivia Arthur and Peter van Agtmael as Full Members". Adweek. Retrieved 16 January 2015.
  28. ^ a b Lindley, Robin (17 March 2010). "Interview: The human face of war". Real Change. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  29. ^ Staff writer (28 January 2010). "The Convoy to Nowhere". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 19 January 2015.
  30. ^ a b "2nd Tour, Hope I Don't Die". Mother Jones. Retrieved 17 January 2015.
  31. ^ "Battlespace - Unrealities of war: Photographs from Iraq and Afghanistan", Prix Bayeux-Calvados. Accessed 17 January 2015.
  32. ^ "Bringing the War Home", Impressions Gallery. Accessed 3 December 2014.

External links[edit]