Sharbat Gula (aka Afghan Girl), Peshawar, Pakistan.
Photo by Steve McCurry, Magnum Photos

Steve McCurry Exhibit

Its Own Place and Feeling

Where & When February 8 - April 2, 2022, Opening Reception: Feb 12, 7pm – 10pm| Etherton Gallery, Tucson, Arizona

Reviewer Patricia Cassidy

I visited the Etherton Gallery, in Tucson on Saturday to attend the Opening Reception of Steve McCurry: Its Own Place and Feeling. Etherton is one of the nation’s leading fine art photography galleries, specializing in post-World War 11 American and Mexican photography.

Steve McCurry is an internationally renowned photographer who captured one of the most iconic images ever in 1984 when he took the photo of the “Afghan Girl”.

I visited the Gallery during the week when the place was quiet knowing that on the Opening Reception night I wouldn’t be able to get near the photos and I wanted to “inhale them” – alone. No crowds. Just me…taking my time. That was a wise move, as the Opening Reception, held in the spacious and light filled gallery, was packed with mask wearing visitors on Saturday evening. The outdoor garden was lit up, showing some interesting sculptures, and a local jazz trio entertained us so it made for a very enjoyable evening as the temperature was a lovely 44 degrees with clear skies and a silvery moon.

Monk at the Jokhang Temple, Lhasa, Tibet 2000
Photo: Steve McCurry, Magnum Photos

McCurry believes that there is always some common thing between all humans despite the differences in religion, language, ethnicity and he captures that beautifully in the 31 outstanding images on display at Etherton.

He is a visual story teller. A Monk running on a wall. A Kashmir Flower seller. Fishermen in Sri Lanka, and of one of my favorite images“Dust Storm,Rajasthan, India, 1983 he says: “I was on a car trip, I saw the dust storm, pulled over and got out of the car. I waited until the women came into view and made a photograph. Dust Storm is a lyrical image that depicts a group of women in bright red saris ringed around a tree, taking shelter from a dust storm”. He waits for a picture, taking in the sights, sounds and smells of his surroundings until his intuition tells him that something is about to happen, as it did with Dust Storm, Rajasthan.

I’m an amateur photographer. I can’t tell you how thrilling it was to view these exquisite images up close. Days later, the images linger and I think of them with enormous warmth.

© 2022 Patricia Cassidy