The awarded photographer Franco Pagetti has covered the conflict in Iraq since January 2003, three months before the start of the war.
Since 2003, he has constantly been based in Baghdad on assignment for TIME Magazine. His images have captured the horrors of war, the brief flowering of hope after the downfall of Saddam Hussein, the rise of insurgent and terrorist groups, and more recently, the inexorable descent into a bloody sectarian civil war.
Pagetti has been a news photographer since 1997, and most of his work has involved conflict situations: Afghanistan (1997, ‘98, 2001, 2009 and 2010), Kosovo (1999), East Timor (1999), Kashmir (1998, 2000 and 2001), Palestine (2002), Sierrra Leone (2001) and South Sudan (1997), Lebanon (2002) Somalia (2010), Democratic Republic of Congo (2010). And most recently Egypt, Libya (2011) and Syria (2013) .
He works on long term projects around war, conflict and social issues and most recently portraits people of our society.
Conflict situations attract Pagetti because they afford the opportunity to observe people and societies in extremis – under tremendous duress. This brings out the best and worst in people, and Pagetti’s lens has captured both incredible heroism as well as grisly brutality in war zones on three continents. Regardless of the geographic setting, Pagetti says, war and its aftermath seem to affect vastly different societies in almost exactly the same way.
Many war photographers can capture the blood and sweat of human combat, but it takes a special eye – the eye of an artist – to peer into the minds of those caught up in the conflict.
His non-conflict news photography has included assignments in India, the Vatican City, Cambodia, Laos, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, Colombia, and his native Italy.
In addition to TIME Magazine, he has worked on assignment for Newsweek, The New York Times magazine, The New Yorker, Stern, L’Espresso and ZEIT Magazine. He is a regular portraits contributor of VOGUE USA and W Magazine.
His work has been published in Le Figaro, Paris Match, The Times of London, The Independent and DAYS JAPAN magazine.
Pagetti lives between Milan and New York.