Image Copyright Restricted

Children Playing on an Abandoned Tank, Kabul, Afghanistan

Kabul, Afghanistan. 1996. Jaede Maiwand. Children Playing on an Abandoned Tank.

James Nachtwey (American, born in 1948)


Image: 32.7 x 47.94 cm (12 7/8 x 18 7/8 in.) Sheet: 40.6 x 50.5 cm (16 x 19 7/8 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Photograph, gelatin silver print

Not On View


Americas, Contemporary Art, Photography



American photographer James Nachtwey was a member of the Magnum photo agency. As a young man, Nachtwey was inspired to become a photojournalist after experiencing the power of the Vietnam War and Civil Rights Movement images produced during the 1960s. His specialty became the documentation of strife and conflict all over the world, whether in Northern Ireland, Bosnia, the Sudan, Iraq, or Afghanistan. Nachtwey thinks of his photographs as testimonies to the horrors of war he has witnessed and is particularly drawn to record the impact of strife on children. In this beautifully composed but disturbing image, young boys’ legs dangle above a bleak Kabul street from their perch atop an abandoned tank.


Verso, in black ink, signature of the artist and date: James Nachtwey 3/14/00


The artist; Magnum Photos, Inc., New York; from whom purchased by MFA, June 2000.

Credit Line

Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation Fund for Photography