Monday, March 30, 2009

Gianni Giansanti

The Pope's Photographer

I never realized just how much I read the obituaries until we started blogging about articles in the New York Times for this class. For some reason the obituaries in the NYT just fascinate me. It struck me as interesting that the pictures that this person had taken during his lifetime were included with his obituary.

Gianni Giansanti photographed Pope John Paul II for almost three decades. He was there when he was named Pontiff and there on the day he died. He was one of the few photographers who had access to the Pope and was allowed to photograph him in private moments as well as following him around the globe photographing him on the world stage.

Mr. Giansanti's more famous photographs include the 1978 image of Aldo Moro, the Italian Prime Minister who was kidnapped, shot and left in the trunk of a car by a terrorist group. He was well known for the "stolen moment" shot. Giansanti used a silent shutter and available light in order to capture people in candid shots.

His other famous photographs include images of Valenino, Mikhail Gorbachev, the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, and the famine in Somalia in the early 1990s.


He published several photograph books including "John Paul II, Portrait of a Pontiff" (1996) and "Vanishing Africa" (2004).

Gianni Giansanti was born in Rome, Italy in 1956 and died March 18, 2009 of bone cancer.

I wonder if pictures we have taken will be on our obituary page instead of a picture of ourselves when we die.

Copyrighted Pictures

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