The wonderful world of Elliott Erwitt

A gallery of images by the master of 'the decisive moment'
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Elliott Erwitt, USA (1963)

1 / 12 Elliott Erwitt, USA (1963)

Elliott Erwitt, Krakow, Poland (1964) (left) and St Tropez, France (1981) (right)

2 / 12 Elliott Erwitt, Krakow, Poland (1964) (left) and St Tropez, France (1981) (right)

Elliott Erwitt, Wyoming (1954)

3 / 12 Elliott Erwitt, Wyoming (1954)

Elliott Erwitt, Robert Frank and son (1951)

4 / 12 Elliott Erwitt, Robert Frank and son (1951)

Elliott Erwitt, Edward Steichen and Ellen Erwitt (1953), New York

5 / 12 Elliott Erwitt, Edward Steichen and Ellen Erwitt (1953), New York

Elliott Erwitt, Paris (1968)

6 / 12 Elliott Erwitt, Paris (1968)

Elliott Erwitt, New York (1955)

7 / 12 Elliott Erwitt, New York (1955)

Elliott Erwitt, Central Park Zoo (1953), New York

8 / 12 Elliott Erwitt, Central Park Zoo (1953), New York

Elliott Erwitt, San Gimignano, Italy (1959)

9 / 12 Elliott Erwitt, San Gimignano, Italy (1959)

Elliott Erwitt, New York (1950)

10 / 12 Elliott Erwitt, New York (1950)

Elliott Erwitt, Valencia, Spain (1952) (left) and Randall Jarell (1954), New York (right)

11 / 12 Elliott Erwitt, Valencia, Spain (1952) (left) and Randall Jarell (1954), New York (right)

Elliott Erwitt, New Rochelle, New York (1955)

12 / 12 Elliott Erwitt, New Rochelle, New York (1955)


Magnum photographer Elliott Erwitt's work is characterised by his sense of humour. This quality has come together with an extraordinary sense of perception and sharp eye over the course of a 50-year career to produce a vast body of photographs that brim with the amusing absurdities of everyday life.

Strange, mundane, witty and optimistic, Erwitt brings a mixed bag of emotions and qualities together to remind us just how much we all have in common. As he once famously said - "It's about finding something interesting in an ordinary place."

He was born in Paris and served as a photographer's assistant in the US Army during the 1950s during which time he met Robert Capa and economist, government official and photographer Roy Stryker who gave him his first important commissions. In the 1970s he began making films and in the 80s produced comedy and satire programmes for Home Box Office in the US. Since then he's undertaken a varied number of commissions while curating shows around the world featuring work from his extensive  archives  Flick through the gallery above taken from the 'Touch' section of his comprehensive monograph Snaps for a taster of his work.


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