ICFJ Auction to Feature Iconic Images from Legendary Photojournalists

By: ICFJ | 09/05/2023

Seventeen iconic images – from a sultry Marilyn Monroe to a pensive Louis Armstrong sitting backstage to the famous punch delivered by boxer Joe Frazier to Muhammad Ali’s face – will be featured at ICFJ’s annual photo auction during the Tribute to Journalists 2023 on Nov. 2. 

The rare collection showcases the extraordinary work of top photojournalists of our time, including the winner of ICFJ’s inaugural Award for Excellence in Visual Journalism – James Nachtwey, one of the world’s foremost documenters of conflict and the tragedy it inflicts. Signed prints will be auctioned off at the tribute, a gala event that will take place virtually and in-person in Washington, D.C. Bids can be placed online in advance.

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The images on auction include:

  • Nachtwey’s gripping photo of a man and child from the Idomeni refugee camp near the Greece-Macedonia border. Refugees were fleeing wars in Syria and Afghanistan, repression in Iran, and poverty in South Asia. Nachtwey, who has been wounded and nearly killed multiple times, has said he puts himself in danger because he believes his photographs can lead people to take action.
  • A magnificent iceberg in Antarctica captured through the lens of Brazilian-born Sebastião Salgado, one of the world’s most renowned photojournalists. The black-and-white photograph, titled “Fortress of Solitude,” is from Salgado’s “Genesis” series, his eight-year mission to document environments and communities around the world in their pure state.
  • David Hume Kennerly’s stunning image from the Ali-Frazier match at New York’s Madison Square Garden in 1971. The match, dubbed the “fight of the century,” pitted two undefeated boxers who were also world champions against each other for the first time. Frazier emerged the victor after 15 rounds. Kennerly, whose career spans 50 years and more than 100 countries, has photographed 10 U.S. presidents.
  • An alluring photograph of Marilyn Monroe under silken sheets captured by Douglas Kirkland, a one-time staff photographer for Life and Look magazines. Renowned for his celebrity images, Kirkland photographed on the sets of more than 100 major motion pictures.
  • An intimate portrait of jazz great Louis Armstrong backstage at a 1971 performance in Las Vegas, captured by the late Associated Press photographer Eddie Adams, one of America’s most published and awarded photojournalists. His career spanned 45 years, covering 13 wars and hundreds of high-profile celebrities.
  • A sorrowful image of mourners at the funeral of a Ukrainian soldier who died while fighting during the Russian invasion. The photo is by Carol Guzy, an internationally acclaimed news photographer and one of only five people to win four Pulitzers. 


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Other outstanding photographers represented in this collection are:

  • Donna Ferrato, known for her fearless and powerful documentation of domestic violence.
  • Lynn Goldsmith, best known for her photographs of music personalities.
  • Lauren Greenfield, a filmmaker and photojournalist renowned for portraying the lifestyles of affluent teens and preteens.
  • Jean-Pierre Laffont, who has covered historic events such as the protests against the Vietnam War and the Civil Rights Movement.  
  • Doug Menuez, who covered the AIDS crisis, homelessness, politics, five Super Bowls and the Olympics.
  • Eli Reed, who photographed the Lebanon war and the 1989 U.S. intervention in Panama, and became the first Black member of Magnum Photos.
  • Eugene Richards, a photographer, writer and filmmaker who has covered drug addiction, pediatric AIDS and family life in America.
  • Rick Smolan, best known as co-creator of the bestselling “Day in the Life” book series that captured everyday life in the U.S., Japan, Russia and elsewhere.  
  • Diane Tuft, a mixed-media artist who has traveled to the North and South Poles to document the visual effects of climate change.
  • Ami Vitale, a National Geographic photographer, writer and filmmaker who has traveled the world to illuminate those working to protect wildlife.
  • Michael Yamashita,  a 40-year veteran of National Geographic with a vast photographic portfolio, most notably in Asia.

The photo exhibit will be previewed ahead of the ICFJ Tribute to Journalists 2023 at the Findlay Galleries in New York City from Oct. 11-18. The annual Tribute honors the achievements of brave journalists whose passion and perseverance have made a huge impact. Many are intrepid reporters who often put their lives on the line to bring us the news.  

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