Sebastiao Salgado was born on February 8th, 1944 in Aimores, in the
state of Minas Gerais, Brazil. He lives in Paris. Having studied
economics, Salgado began his career as a professional photographer
in 1973 in Paris, working with the photo agencies Sygma, Gamma, and
Magnum Photos until 1994, when he and Lelia Wanick Salgado formed
Amazonas images, an agency created exclusively for his work.
He has travelled in over 100 countries for his photographic projects. Most of these, besides appearing in numerous press publications, have also been presented in books such as
Other Americas (1986), Sahel: l'homme en detresse (1986),
Sahel: el fin del camino (1988),
Workers (1993), Terra (1997),
Migrations and Portraits (2000), and Africa (2007).
Touring exhibitions of this work have been, and continue to be, presented throughout the world.
Sebastiao Salgado has been awarded numerous major photographic prizes in recognition of his accomplishments. He is a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, and an honorary member of the Academy of Arts and Sciences in the United States.
In 2004, Sebastiao Salgado began a project namedGenesis, aiming at the presentation of the unblemished faces of nature and humanity. It consists of a series of photographs of landscapes and wildlife, as well as of human communities that continue to live in accordance with their ancestral traditions and cultures. This body of work is conceived as a potential path to humanity's rediscovery of itself in nature.
Together, Lelia and Sebastiao have worked since the 1990's on the restoration of a small part of the Atlantic Forest in Brazil. In 1998 they succeeded in turning this land into a nature reserve and created the Instituto Terra. The Instituto is dedicated to a mission of reforestation, conservation and environmental education.