VII Agency

VII is a storied photo agency founded a few days before 9/11 to challenge the convergence in the photography business when the trend for giant companies swallowing smaller independent agencies started. VII went small and photographer-owned, believing in the power and energy of collective effort when everyone else seemed to be going big and corporate. VII remains a disruptive and innovative business unafraid to swim against the prevailing currents.

VII has turned its gaze far from the frontline of its foundation. It has earned a reputation for uncompromising photography immersed in the great issues of today. VII photographers and filmmakers are as likely to be found focusing on race, gender, and identity as they are on migration or conflict. Amplifying local voices and addressing the complex political, environmental, and social questions facing families everywhere, VII places great value in the power of images to tell important stories. The members of VII are motivated by issues and are proud to elevate those issues above the cult of the image or the cult of the photographer.

VII History

Founded in September 2001, VII was named for the number of its founding members, all leading photojournalists and documentarians emboldened and enabled by the ability to easily distribute their work in what was then the new digital age of photography.

Their first assignment was photographing 9/11. James Nachtwey, one of the founding members of VII was packing his bags to go on an assignment in the Caribbean. He looked out of his window near Wall Street in New York and saw everyone in the street looking up at the sky. He saw flames coming out of the World Trade Center just a few blocks from his apartment. Nachtwey spent the next hours photographing as the Twin Towers collapsed, killing thousands of civilians. The other six founding members of the agency flew from Europe to the USA or to Afghanistan, where they covered the fall of the Taliban, and unimaginable to them at the time, the beginning of America’s longest war. VII focused much of its energy in the ensuing years documenting the wars and violence that followed in the Middle East, wars that have killed hundreds of thousands of civilians.

Over the intervening years, the agency has evolved into a multifaceted institution representing 30 photographers, adding to its high-level journalism and documentary photography new business channels in publishing, and film making. VII now works in close partnership with the VII Foundation, a US based media non-profit which addresses systemic human rights issues; and the VII Academy, which offers tuition free training in journalism to men and women from the majority world from its bases in Arles, France, and Sarajevo, Bosnia. Since its launch, VII has been recognized as one of the world’s preeminent photographer-owned photography and media agencies and has inspired many imitators.



  • Anush Babajanyan
  • Jessica Dimmock
  • Linda Bournane Engelberth
  • Danny Wilcox Frazier
  • Ziyah Gafic
  • Mary Gelman
  • Ashley Gilbertson
  • Ron Haviv
  • Ed Kashi
  • Maciek Nabrdalik
  • Ilvy Njiokiktjien
  • Nichole Sobecki


  • Ali Arkady
  • Jocelyn Bain Hogg
  • Philip Blenkinsop
  • Eric Bouvet
  • Stefano De Luigi
  • Gary Knight
  • Joachim Ladefoged
  • Paul Lowe
  • Christopher Morris
  • Seamus Murphy
  • Franco Pagetti
  • Espen Rasmussen
  • Daniel Schwartz
  • Maggie Steber
  • John Stanmeyer
  • Sara Terry
  • Tomas Van Houtryve
  • The Estate of Alexandra Boulat


Gary Knight

Giana Choroszewski
[email protected]

Amber Maitland
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General Inquiries
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Board of Directors

The Board is responsible for the governance of the agency and is elected annually at the Annual General Meeting where the members discuss business strategy and direction. The Board works with the management and staff to implement that strategy. The current Chair of the Board is Ron Haviv, and the members of the Board are Linda Bournane Engelberth, Vallejo Gantner, Ashley Gilbertson, Paul Lowe, Nichole Sobecki, John Stanmeyer, and Sara Terry.

In October 2017, with the integration of 12 new photographers, including 6 women, the agency created a new initiative focussed on ensuring the well being of its female members. Jessica Dimmock, a highly respected and long-standing member of the agency, leads the initiative.