Infinity Awards

The Infinity Awards are the leading honor for excellence in photography. Since 1985, this annual event has recognized major contributions and emerging talents in the field.

Our Legacy

ICP was founded by Cornell Capa in 1974 as an institution to keep the legacy of "Concerned Photography" alive. After the untimely deaths of his brother Robert Capa and colleagues Werner Bischof, Chim (David Seymour), and Dan Weiner in the 1950s, Capa saw the need to keep their humanitarian documentary work in the public eye. In 1966, he founded the International Fund for Concerned Photography. By 1974, the Fund needed a home, and the International Center of Photography was created. Since its founding, ICP has presented over 500 exhibitions, bringing the work of more than 3,000 photographers and other artists to the public in one-person and group exhibitions and provided various classes and workshops for students.

Key Milestones

1966
Cornell Capa establishes the International Fund for Concerned Photography in the memory of his brother Robert Capa, a war photographer.
1974
Cornell founds the International Center of Photography, located in the historic Willard Straight House at 1130 Fifth Avenue at East 94th Street in New York.

Apropos USSR (1954 and 1973): Henri Cartier-Bresson, Classics of Contemporary Photography, and Eye of the Beholder inaugurate the exhibition program in November 1974.

New York City Mayor Abraham D. Beame proclaims November 16, 1974 to be “International Center of Photography Day”.

Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis writes an anonymous column for The New Yorker on the opening of ICP.
1977
The Museum Education program is established.
1978
Director Cornell Capa receives New York City’s Award of Honor for Arts and Culture from Mayor Edward Koch.
1979
The Department of Archives and Permanent Collections is established.
1980
Traveling Exhibitions Program expands to nine exhibitions in 25 locations internationally.

The “Photography in the Fine Arts” organization donates over 700 original prints to the ICP Permanent Collection.

Allure: A Selection of Photographs from the New Publication by Diana Vreeland opens. (BY)
1981
Permanent Collection Gallery opens with Works of David Seymour “Chim”: A Memorial Exhibition.

Cornell Capa is part of a delegation of American artists invited to travel in China by the Center for U.S.-China Arts Exchange.
1982
Master of Arts in Photography Program is instituted in collaboration with New York University.

The ICP Purchase Fund is established. Three major bodies of work are acquired in the initial year: 79 original photographs from Weegee the Famous, 95 photographs from Jacob A. Riss: Photographs 1888-1898, and 75 photographs from Lucien Aigner: Glimpses of History, all ICP exhibitions.
1983
ICP’s full-time Documentary Photography and Photojournalism Program is created.
1984
ICP Encyclopedia of Photography is published by Crown Publishers, Inc.

ICP’s full time General Studies in Photography Program is established. (BY)
1985
ICP Midtown opens at International Paper Plaza, 77 West 45th Street, New York City with the inaugural exhibition City Light, featuring work from the permanent collection.

The first annual ICP Infinity Awards program, recognizing excellence in photography, is held at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel.

A complete first edition set of Camera Work, edited by Alfred Stieglitz, is acquired by the Permanent Collection.
1986
The American Association of Museums confers accreditation on ICP.

The Permanent Collection acquires 200 photographs by members of the “Photography Art Society of Lithuania”.
1987
ICP hosts Oracle V, an annual meeting of photography professionals from museums and university teaching programs worldwide.
1989
ICP Midtown moves to a larger facility at 1133 Avenue of the Americas under the sponsorship of the Eastman Kodak Company. Opening exhibitions include Alexander Liberman: The Artist in His Studio, James Nachtwey: Deeds of War, and Barbara Kasten: Architectural Sites.
1990
The Permanent Collection acquires a major body of work by the photographer and art director, Alexander Liberman.
1991
Annie Leibovitz: Photographs 1970 - 1990 breaks all ICP exhibition attendance records.

ICP Archives and Collections are relocated to a newly renovated and expanded facility at ICP Midtown.

The Permanent Collection receives The Daniel Cowin Collection of African-American History, approximately 3,000 images dating from the 1850s through the 1950s. 1992: The Robert Capa Archive is donated to ICP - over 3,000 original gelatin silver prints, negatives, correspondence, publications, and a set of 937 contemporary gelatin silver prints selected as this photojournalist’s most important images.
1993
ICP establishes a presence in downtown Manhattan at the Continental Center Gallery, showing six exhibitions a year from the ICP Permanent Collection.
1994
Willis Hartshorn is named Director of ICP and Cornell Capa becomes Founding Director Emeritus.

The Weegee (Arthur Fellig) Archive and Collection - 13,000 prints, 7,000 original negatives , and assorted motion picture film, exhibition announcements/posters, and personal correspondence - is donated to ICP.
1997
Weegee’s World - Life, Death and the Human Drama opens, along with the publication of Weegee’s World, with essays by Miles Barth, Ellen Handy, and Alain Bergala by Bullfinch Press. (BY)
1999
Reflections in a Glass Eye: Works from the International Center of Photography Collection is published by Bullfinch Press. (BY)
2000
ICP's Midtown site reopens and becomes the headquarters of ICP's exhibitions programs. The new ICP also includes an expanded store and café.

James Nachtwey: Testimony, curated by Ann Sass, opens. (BY)
2001
The School of the International Center of Photography opens across from the museum at 1114 Avenue of the Americas in New York. The new 27,000-square-foot school facility doubles ICP's teaching space and expands programming and community outreach.

Deirdre Donohue is hired as the first full-time professional librarian for ICP’s 22,000+ volume library. (BY)

New Histories of Photography 1: Daguerreotypomania! opens, the first of a series of collaborations between ICP and the George Eastman House, Rochester, under the general title New Histories of Photography. (BY)

Strangers: The First ICP Triennial of Photography and Video opens.
2003
The ICP-Bard MFA Program in Advanced Photographic Studies is established. 2004: Only Skin Deep: Changing Visions of the American Self, curated by Brian Wallis and Coco Fusco opens, accompanied by a catalog published by Abrams. (BY)
2005
Young America: The Daguerreotypes of Southworth and Hawes opens, curated by Grant Romer, Brian Wallis, Erin Barnett, and Kristen Lubben; a catalog is published by Steidl. (BY)
2006
Archive Fever: Uses of the Document in Contemprary Art, organized by Okwui Enwezor, opens. (BY)

Snap Judgements: New Positions in Contemporary African Photography, organized by Okwui Enwezor, opens, with a catalog published by Steidl. (BY)
2007
Ecotopia: The Second ICP Triennial of Photography and Video opens. (BY)

The legendary three cardboard boxes known as the “Mexican Suitcase” containing lost film negatives of the Spanish Civil War by Robert Capa, Gerda Taro, and David Seymour arrive at ICP (BY)
2010
Dress Codes: The Third ICP Triennial of Photography and Video opens. (BY)
2012
Willis Hartshorn retires as Director of ICP; Mark Robbins is named Director. (BY)
2013
Mark Robbins resigns as Director of ICP; Mark Lubell is named Director. (BY)

A Different Kind of Order: The ICP Triennial opens. (BY)
2014
ICP appoints Fred Ritchin as Dean of School.
2015
New Media Narratives full-time, certificate program begins at the ICP School.
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