PDN Photo of the Day

Syria Before the War

In 2003, Kevin Bubriski was on assignment in Syria. He was photographing the country’s ancient monuments, as well as documenting the daily lives of its citizens. Within a decade, the Syrian Civil war would break out, destroying or damaging many of the scenes he captured.

Legacy in Stone: Syria Before War (powerHouse Books 2019) is a collection of black-and-white photographs that immortalize the ancient monuments of Syria and preserve snippets of ordinary life before the war.

Until the Syrian Civil War began in 2010, the Suq in Aleppo was considered to be the longest continuously inhabited place of commerce in the world, existing for well over two millennia. Bubriski photographed the Suq while it was still thriving, teeming with merchants and artisans. He also made many images from the Dead Cities, a group of roughly 700 abandoned villages dating back to the 1st to 7th centuries in northwest Syria.

With a sense of discovery and awe, Bubriski remembers “seeing the ruins take shape on the ground-glass of his Hasselblad camera as he gathered and preserved these sites forever in photographs,” writes powerHouse in a statement.

Legacy in Stone: Syria Before War
Kevin Bubriski
powerHouse Books 2019

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  1. Love the quote about viewing the image “take shape on the ground-glass.” Since I learned photography using a 4×5 view camera (from Aaron Siskind and Harry Callahan at the ID) that experience has stayed with me as I moved on to 2 1/4 and 35mm SLR camera. The discipline of composing and studying can be mesmerizing.

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