Kuwait Oil Well Fire-Fighter.
Although this image isn’t as popular as many other photographs of tragedies, it definitely has something those others do not, as it suggests the human spirit can overcome this set horror. This is a famous image of a fire-fighter as he tries to combat an accidental fire at an oil well in Kuwait during 1991.
A photographer by the name of Sebastiao Salgado is responsible for capturing this moment in all of its terror and glory. His purpose was to show his philosophy of the world by taking pictures that reflected how he felt about everything. A main theme of his work was how he believed that luxury and industry were becoming detrimental to the human spirit, but we could overcome it by acting with courage and kindness. So while nearly all of his works are more focused on showing the destruction and harsh sides of civilizations, every once in a while we would see pictures like this one that focus more on his high opinion of humanity.
Salgado is continuously involved with efforts to help with charitable projects even in his current old age. His many books and collections of photography have put him on the map and sold well. This fine picture is one of a collection he put together that he decided to entitle “Workers” which was themed to show how the common man is much more than common.
He often cites this as his favorite book because of how highly he regards courageous men. Salgado is still considered one of Brazil’s finest artists and claims he will continuously work to accomplish his goals of lifting up mankind while criticizing what he views as the dark side of modern society.