In 1998 Alex Webb visited Istanbul and was immediately enthralled by its people, history, and the richness of its street life, especially the sense of Istanbul as a border city between East and West, Europe and Asia, the only major city in the world that actually exists on two continents. He has returned whenever possible, and the resulting work conveys the frisson of a culture in transition, yet firmly rooted in history. Founded by the Greeks some twenty-seven centuries ago, this much-fought-over trading center has been the capital of two of history’s most powerful empires—the Byzantine and the Ottoman—and now stands as the largest city of one of the world’s few secular Muslim nations, which hopes to enter the European Union. In Istanbul: City of a Hundred Names, Webb’s uses his ability to distill gesture, color, and contrasting cultural tensions into a single, beguiling frame to full effect in presenting his vision of Istanbul: a city of minarets and pigeons rising to the heavens during the dawn call to prayer, yet also a city of ATM machines and designer jeans.

Stay in touch
Stay up to date every Thursday with Magnum photographers’ activities, new work, stories published on the Magnum website, and the latest offerings from our shop.
Be the first to know about recent Magnum Shop drops. From new books and limited editions, to special offers, you can find it all on the weekly Magnum Shop newsletter.
Get fortnightly tips and advice articles, find out about the latest workshops, free online events and on-demand courses.
Learn about online and offline exhibitions, photography fairs, gallery events, plus fine print news and activities, on a monthly basis.
Know when our quarterly 7-day square print sale is coming.
Monthly updates on the latest assignments, photographer projects and collaborations with brands.