Mahdi Barchian

Mahdi Barchian

  • Documentary Photographer
  • Environmental Photographer


  • Pulitzer Center Grantee

Mahdi Barchian is a documentary photographer based in Gorgan, Iran. By early 2010, Mahdi started his journey of visual storytelling as a freelancer, and to pursuit his ambition he had traveled widely in Middle East region and conducted various stories, from different communities and their respected cultures.

Barchian’s works are mostly focused on the humanitarian issues such as refugee crises, Internal migrations, and climate changes. For over a period of 5 years, he has conducted stories on human displacement including, Afghan migrants in Iran, Tibetan migrants in north of India, and Syrian refugees in Iraqi-Kurdistan.

In 2017 Barchian joined NVP Images as an associate photographer. Since then, he has covered several humanitarian crisis developments in Iran and Iraq which brought him prestigious acknowledgments such as receiving the Pulitzer Center grant. He is currently working on a long-term project on climate change with a subject of “The Relationship Between Human and Nature”.

Every human mental state depends on the quality of his/her dreams. But I was born in a region, where dreams fade. Middle East, the realm of wars, revelations, and insurrections of the past few decades. Middle East, the forefront of the global news.

It is also a home ground for interesting cultural, historical, and religious believes, and ceremonies. The events that shape hopes, make dreams and suddenly destroys them. In this gray and hazy circumstance, I am searching for signs of hope in people’s lives.

Walking On A Blade

Walking on a Blade is a Group photographic project that seeks to illuminate the less travelled road and to glimpse into the lives and daily struggles of daily workers in the time of Coronavirus.

Latest Projects

In our time of gray and hazy circumstance, I am searching for signs of hope in people's lives.

The Disability Center

Project Location | Middle East, Iran, Gorgan Production Date | 2020-06-06 – (2020 Grant recipients of Pulitzer Center) The Behkoush Center is one of Iran’s most celebrated educational centers for people with mental disabilities. Boys aged ten years and older, diagnosed with any type of…

The Sewing Shop

Project Location | Middle East, Iran, Gorgan Production Date | 2020-05-01 – (2020 Grant recipients of Pulitzer Center) Gandom Charity Center, a tailoring workshop, employs women who are physically ill, migrant workers, or the sole earners of their families. Founded six years ago, the workshop…

Death of 7000 migratory birds

Project Location | Middle East, Iran, Gorgan Production Date | 2019-07-17 Many Dead Migratory Birds were found in Miankaleh peninsula, located in Mazandaran province of Iran.  On the sixth day of monitoring, the number of dead migratory birds have reached 7,000, the carcasses were mostly from…

Golestan Flood

Project Location | Middle East, Iran, Golestan Production Date | 2019-03-26 The Golestan floods, caused by heavy rains starting on 19 March, have affected a total of 10 cities in northeast Iran (The cities of Gorgan, Bandar Turkman, Azad Shahr, Aq Qqala, Gonbad-e Kavus, bandar-e Gaz, Ali Abad,…

See all his projects