Laura Havlin is a London-based content strategist, editor, and NCTJ-qualified journalist. She works with creative and cultural institutions to deliver editorial and social content strategies, build audiences and develop new editorial content products.
At D&AD, she led the content strategy for reinventing the iconic D&AD Annual as a digital product for the first time in its six-decade-spanning history celebrating creative excellence in the commercial creative industries. Laura has overseen the editorial direction and content production of four editions since 2020. Currently, she is Head of Content at D&AD, leading a team on editorial and social output.
Her track record of launching editorial content products in the cultural space includes the role of Senior Editor on Magnum Photos' editorial website, from the development phase and launch in 2016, through the first three-and-a-half years of publishing. She commissioned new work from Magnum members and invited new contemporary interventions on the vast historical archive. From a senior position in the Digital team, her work supported the Education, Commercial and Cultural teams to reach commercial targets, as well as building Magnum's reputation as a media and learning brand.
Original new work by Magnum Photographers, commissioned by Laura includes: Matt Black exploring controversial monuments, and Gueorgui Pinkhassov showcasing his unique skill for capturing light at Blackpool Illuminations. She also worked with expert writers, archivists and estates to create original editorial, such as Herbert List’s archivist Peer-Olaf Richter on the German artist’s photographs of love, desire, and friendship; and Hugh Hefner’s former archivist at Playboy providing new context to Burt Glinn’s images of the Playboy Mansion Chicago, for example.
Previously, Laura worked on content at digital publishers, cultural institutions and brands, including Digital Content Editor for Serpentine Galleries; Content Strategist and Editor at M&C Saatchi; and freelance roles, such as Acting Editor at NOWNESS.
Laura continues to write about visual culture. This includes interviews with actors, such as Tom Hiddleston and Theo James for Flaunt Magazine; artist interviews for Dazed & Confused; author interviews for The British Journal of Photography, Ghostwritten essays with the likes of Peter Saville for the self-published Afterzine, and essays on art and culture for AnOther, Sleek, and Elephant magazines, amongst others. Writing highlights from her time with Magnum Photos include interview features: with Mark Sealy OBE on how promoting diversity in curatorship can help redefine the role of the archive; Danny Lyon on a lifetime of amplifying the voices of society’s outliers; and Mikhael Subotzky on his multidisciplinary artwork.
Recently published new editorial work includes: ‘How AI raises new as well as age-old questions about documentary photography’ for the 2023 D&AD Annual; and a piece for Darklight Art about ‘The rise of the charity photographic print sale’.
In addition to being published in the consumer arts, fashion and lifestyle magazines listed above, Laura’s cultural writing has been cited in a number of articles, papers and books. Her work has been cited academically by papers published by The Sorbonne, and books citing her writing include, ‘Time in Fashion, Industrial, Antilinear and Uchronic Temporalities’ (Bloomsbury), and ‘The DIY Movement in Art, Music and Publishing: Subjugated Knowledges’ (Routledge).