Damir Sagolj

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Damir Sagolj was born in 1971 in Sarajevo, in what is now Bosnia. After school he began studying architecture, but after a year moved with his family to Moscow, where his father worked as the correspondent for the main Bosnian newspaper Oslobodjenje.

In Moscow, he studied at the Moscow Power Engineering Institute, but in 1990 moved back to complete his engineering studies in Sarajevo. During the 1992-95 war in the Balkans, Sagolj served with the Bosnian army, and began taking pictures. In 1995, he started working with Paris-based Sipa press agency, and offering pictures to Reuters—eventually becoming Reuters’ staff photographer in Bosnia in 1996.

As the situation in the Balkans quietened, Sagolj started traveling to the Middle East, mainly to Iran, Lebanon and Israel, and after 9/11 to Afghanistan and Iraq. A photo from his coverage of coalition troops in Iraq was a finalist for a Pulitzer Prize.

Beside covering conflict in the Balkans, Middle East, Asia and America, Sagolj shot other assignments for Reuters, including the Olympics, the soccer World Cups, and various European and Asian sports championships. He has covered post 9/11 in New York City, floods in Pakistan and Thailand, the tsunami in Japan, as well as the historical events and changes in Myanmar and the war crimes tribunal in The Hague. More recently he has covered the war on drugs in Philippines and the ongoing crisis in and around North Korea.

In 2009 he moved to Bangkok, Thailand and then in 2015 to Beijing where he is currently based and works as Reuters chief photographer for China.

Sagolj’s photos have been published in leading magazines and newspapers. He is the recipient of several international awards for photojournalism including World Press Photo, Pictures of the Year International, CHIPP and SOPA. He has participated in numerous exhibitions, including his two solo shows at Visa pour l’Image, in Perpignan, France.

Sagolj holds MA in Photojournalism and Documentary Photography from London College of Communication.

Damir Sagolj