With over 250 images that span the astonishing range of his subjects and his evolution as a photographer, this is the first career retrospective of Eli Reed, one of America’s leading contemporary photojournalists and the first African American member of Magnum Photos.
Award-winning documentary photographer Eli Reed’s “long walk” has been a journey that has taken him from a low-income housing project in Perth Amboy, New Jersey, to Harvard University and to membership in the elite international photojournalists’ collective, Magnum Photos. Reed’s quest to understand “what it means to be a human being” has given him an extraordinary empathy with the people he photographs, whether they are Lost Boys in Sudan, the poor in America, or actors in Hollywood. In a photographic career spanning five decades, Reed has been the recipient of a World Understanding Award from POYi (Pictures of the Year International), Lucie Award for Achievement in Documentary, World Press Award, Leica Medal of Excellence, Overseas Press Club Award, and a Nieman Fellowship at Harvard, as well as a runner-up for a Pulitzer Prize.
Eli Reed: A Long Walk Home presents the first career retrospective of Reed’s work. Consisting of over 250 images that span the full range of his subjects and his evolution as a photographer, the photographs are a visual summation of the human condition. They include examples of Reed’s early work; a broad selection of images of people from New York to California that constitutes a brilliant collective portrait of the social, cultural, and economic experiences of Americans in our time; images of life and conflict in Africa, the Middle East, Haiti, Central America, England, Spain, South America, and China; portraits of women and Hollywood actors; and self-portraits. Reed’s artist statement and an introduction by Paul Theroux, whom Reed met while working in Africa, complete the volume.
Introduction by Paul Theroux
- On the Verge
- The World
- Beauty, Illusion, and Power
Dedication and Acknowledgments
“A Long Walk Home [is] a definitive–that is, big—retrospective of the work of Mr. Reed, a longtime member of Magnum. Working from an original selection of about 1,000 images—face it, his interests are wide and his eye wide-ranging—the book has some 250 photos that chronicle not just the world, but also Mr. Reed’s search for understanding of the human condition.”
New York Times Lens Blog
“Reed, the first African American to join the prestigious photo collective Magnum, has witnessed and experienced the world through its many turns; tender, tumultuous, violent, vigorous, hopeful and helpless. Although he photographs from a six-foot-five-inch height, his work is never aloof, it is full of compassionate, intimate and grounded moments.”
“Whether he’s photographing Hollywood actors or armed militia men, Eli Reed’s work can be characterized by a distinct sense of humanity and empathy. His book, A Long Walk Home... is an expansive testament to this quality through more than 250 black-and-white images from several continents and more than five decades covering a wide spectrum of subjects.”
Slate Behold Blog
“A splendid selection of Eli Reed’s work . . . from vivid, often disturbing photojournalistic works to introspective, elegant portraits.”
Mark Lubell, Executive Director of the International Center of Photography, New York City
“Everything about Eli Reed’s work is unlikely, surprising, original, strong, and humane—like the man himself.”
Paul Theroux, from the introduction