Most photographers can attest that the majority of their life’s work has never been seen by anyone. Jobs call for a tight edit, a single shot to tell an entire story, and once you have it, you move on, forgetting the shots that almost made it. Negatives are tucked away in binders and shoved in old shoe boxes in the tops of closets and under beds, while digital files sit on old hard drives collecting dust in desk drawers.
It’s a familiar story for anyone who shoots regularly. A few months ago the Magnum photographers challenged one another to dig through those archives and select a single photograph that they love, but for whatever reason didn’t make that initial cut. These forgotten frames from the likes of Moises Saman, Elliott Erwitt, Bruce Davidson, and more can be purchased through the Magnum website during the “Archive Dive Square Sale.” Thirty seven Magnum photographers are participating in the”Archive Dive,” selling rarely seen signed 6×6 prints for $100 each.
“When you’re editing you’re editing towards a certain end, and when that end is met you forget about the pictures that didn’t make it,” Larry Towell, who is participating in the sale, told the Lens Blog. “What this Magnum project has done is allowed us to go back and re-edit. There isn’t enough re-editing being done today.”
Prints will be available to purchase through Nov. 14, 2014. A box set of all 37 photographs is available for $2,850.