SOAS University of London

Ian Berry

The First London Exhibition of Photographs of South Africa by Ian Berry
13 April - 25 June 2004
Ian Berry
 Ian Berry

Ian Berry made his reputation as a photojournalist with his reporting from South Africa where he worked for the Daily Mail and later Drum magazine. He was the only photographer to document the massacre at Sharpeville, his photographs subsequently used in the trial proving the victim's innocence.

While based in Paris he was invited to join Magnum in 1962 by Henri Cartier-Bresson. He moved to London in 1964 to become the first contract photographer for the Observer Magazine.

Assignments have taken him world wide documenting Russia's invasion of Czechoslovakia, conflict in Israel and Ireland, wars in Vietnam, Zaire and Rwanda, famine in Ethiopia and apartheid in South Africa. It was from the latter major body of work that two of his books were produced - Black and Whites L'Afrique du Sud, with a foreword by the then French President, Mitterrand, and later, Living Apart, published by Phaidon.

Important editorial assignments include work for National Geographic, Fortune, Stern, GEO, national Sunday magazines, Esquire and other international magazines. He has also reported on the political and social transformations evident in China and the former USSR. Two recent projects involved retracing the steps of the original Silk Road through Turkey, Iran, and Southern Central Asia to Northern China for Conde Nast Traveller and photographing Berlin for a Stern supplement.

Awards include the first ever Nikon Photographer of the Year, Picture of the Year award from the National Press Photographers of America, British Press Magazine Photographer of the Year and the first Arts Council Grant which led to his acclaimed book,The English.

Exhibitions have been held in Tokyo, Perpignan, Paris, Hamburg, London, Belgium, Aix-en-Provence and the Museum of Photography in Bradford.

Partial Bibliography:

  • The English, 1978
  • Living Apart, 1996