Iconic photographs by René Burri

Key cultural figures of the 20th century
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René Burri, Winston Churchill (1946), Zurich, Switzerland

1 / 12 René Burri, Winston Churchill (1946), Zurich, Switzerland

René Burri, Sharpshooters (1954), Jura Mountain Range, Switzerland

2 / 12 René Burri, Sharpshooters (1954), Jura Mountain Range, Switzerland

René Burri, Pablo Picasso (1957), Villa La Californie, Cannes, France

3 / 12 René Burri, Pablo Picasso (1957), Villa La Californie, Cannes, France

René Burri, Le Corbusier (1959), Paris, France

4 / 12 René Burri, Le Corbusier (1959), Paris, France

René Burri, Maria Callas (1959), Philadelphia, USA

5 / 12 René Burri, Maria Callas (1959), Philadelphia, USA

René Burri, Newlyweds (1959), New York, USA

6 / 12 René Burri, Newlyweds (1959), New York, USA

René Burri, In the Ministry of Health (1960), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

7 / 12 René Burri, In the Ministry of Health (1960), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

René Burri, Contact sheets of Che Guevara (1963), Havana, Cuba.

8 / 12 René Burri, Contact sheets of Che Guevara (1963), Havana, Cuba.

René Burri, Che Guevara (1963), Havana, Cuba

9 / 12 René Burri, Che Guevara (1963), Havana, Cuba

René Burri, Tower by Luis Barragán (1969), Mexico City, Mexico

10 / 12 René Burri, Tower by Luis Barragán (1969), Mexico City, Mexico

René Burri, Prisoners (1973), Saigon, South Vietnam

11 / 12 René Burri, Prisoners (1973), Saigon, South Vietnam

René Burri, Richard Nixon and Anwar Sadat (1974), Giza, Egypt

12 / 12 René Burri, Richard Nixon and Anwar Sadat (1974), Giza, Egypt


Swiss Magnum Photographer René Burri took his first pictures as a child using his father’s camera, one of which was a portrait of Winston Churchill in Zurich in 1946, which shows his nascent skill and ability for composition.

Burri has said that he never waits for the perfect moment to take a photograph; instead he quickly captures what is happening in front of the camera, which comes to include a distinctive picture.

Burri has captured iconic images of key cultural figures of the 20th century, including Le Corbusier and Giacometti; his account of the major politicians and personalities that he has made a part of his life show why Burri is of one of the world's greatest living photographers.


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