Search Results for 'greece'

alessandro penso – Lost Generation : this is the story of young, unaccompanied migrants in greece

Emerging Photographer Fund – 2014 Winner


Hover over the image for navigation and full screen controls

EPF 2014 winner

Alessandro Penso

Lost Generation : This is the Story of Young, Unaccompanied Migrants in Greece

play this essay


Hundreds, thousands, hidden in the abandoned industrial areas that surround the port of Patras or in the old disused train station in the centre of Corinth.
I found them in the “urban holes” that dot the landscape of an Athens wounded by the crisis. They are the kids I followed for this project, some of whom are very young. After desperate journeys, they arrive from the wars which have tormented their countries in recent years. But war, for them, was only the beginning of the tragedy.
Those who come from the Middle East and Central Asia are trying to reach Europe, the land I am lucky enough to call home, through its eastern door, Greece. They then get stuck there, amidst increasingly harsh security checks and racism which tragically often degenerates into neo-Nazi violence. For many, there is the hope of being able to rebuild the sort of life that would be impossible in their countries.
The young Afghans I met are mainly fleeing the forced militarization practiced by the Taliban in Afghanistan, subsequent to the war that affected the country in 2001. For many others who are fleeing a scorching North Africa in revolt, the hope is to have recognized the rights denied by the radicalization of the violence in their country of origin. Persecution for religious and ethnic reasons, or due to political opinion, could allow them to obtain refugee status in other European Union countries, but certainly not in Greece.
For this reason, they are forced to hide, because having a Greek police record would mean the end of the dream of safe reception in Europe. I learned that this is set out by the Dublin Regulation, the EU law with responsibility for granting asylum. According to the regulation, the country where a person is first identified is the country that has the duty and right to decide whether to grant refugee status or not, irrespective of where the application for asylum is made.



Alessandro Penso studied clinical psychology at Rome’s La Sapienza University. In 2007, he received a scholarship to study photojournalism at the “Scuola Romana di Fotografia”. Since completing his studies, his work has won several awards, including the PDN Photo Student Award, the PDN Photo Annual Award, Px3, the Project Launch Award in Santa Fe 2011, and the Terry O’ Neill TAG Award 2012, Sofa Global Award 2013, 1st General News of World press Photo and Magnum Foundation Emergency Found. Alessandro is deeply committed to social issues, and in recent years he has been focusing on the issue of immigration in the Mediterranean. Mediterranean countries are providing an outlet for the phenomena of cultural closure, xenophobia and violence, which represent, for migrants, an insurmountable obstacle to their enjoyment of even the most basic human rights.


Related links

Alessandro Penso




enri canaj – shadow in greece

Hover over the image for navigation and full screen controls

Enri Canaj

Shadow In Greece

play this essay


The centre of Athens, as I first remember it, was full of life.

During the period before the Olympic Games, there was great development. New hotels appeared in order to host the visitors, shops, restaurants and cafes kept sprouting out, it was full of people everywhere. All this happened within a few years. It was as if the city put on new clothes. During the days of the Olympics, the city was clean and well-guarded. You would not see street- merchants, drug-addicts or immigrants, just tourists and people who came in order to have a good time. In my eyes, it looked like another place.

As time passed, the city started deteriorating and gradually recovered its previous character: the everyday life that we all knew, with the junkies, the street-merchants, the the immigrants and the prostitutes.

Time passes fast. The city is now fading. Some people abandon it due to the crisis. Many shops and hotels have shut down, the centre is now almost deserted. People fear they will get ripped-off, they hear that this happens all the time. They no longer feel like going out and wandering about like before. They even fear seeing all the poverty and destitution, they drug-users who will rip you off for their shot, the women prostituting themselves.

But for me, those people were always there. I found them all there when I first arrived as a 9-year old child. They were always there when I was growing up. They are somehow trapped in their lives, subsisting in terrible circumstances, in squalid houses with insufficient hygiene.

The immigrants live in small rooms that they rent, many of them together, without much hope. The women prostitute themselves even in the streets for 5€. You don’t want to run into them in the street. Yet, hanging around with them has been my daily routine. This way, it was easier to approach them. They are sensitive people with a lot of problems, with ruined families behind them. Sometimes they give the impression that no one has cared for them. As if they want someone to talk to, as if they want to get out of the misery they are in. For some of them I had the sense that they were almost looking for someone to open up to and take it all out. Like confessing. What made an impression on me was that they often opened up and talked as if they knew me. Sometimes they talked about difficult things, about what they were experiencing, as if they were talking about someone else. Almost as if they felt better this way.

I would only shoot when I sensed that they were more comfortable, after some time had passed. Sometimes, unexpected things happened, and made me change the plan I had in mind. Other times, things just happened spontaneously, and I was just following along. The images I have selected are stronger for me, because I know the story behind them.

I have been working on this project since 2011. My work is still in progress. When others looks at those pictures I want them to feel respect and dignity for the subjects. Like I do.



Enri Canaj was born in Tirana, Albania, in 1980. He spent his early childhood there and moved with his family to Greece in 1991, immediately after the opening of the borders. He is based in Athens and covers stories in Greece and the Balkans.

He studied photography at the Leica Academy in Athens. In 2007 he took part in a British Council project on migration, attending a year-long workshop with Magnum photographer Nikos Economopoulos.

Since 2008, he has been a freelance photographer for major publications such as Time Magazine Lightbox, Newsweek, Le monde Diplomatique (German edition),TO VIMA, TA NEA, Tachydromos and VIMAGAZINO. A sample of his work has been exhibited at the Cultural Foundation of the National Bank of Greece in Athens and Salonica, at the Bilgi Santral in Istanbul, the European Parliament in Brussels and the Athens Photo Festival.

He has been working in the Balkans, mainly Kosovo and Albania, as well as Greece, focusing on migration and the recent crisis.


Related links:

Enri Canaj


vissaria skoulida – greece in reverse

Hover over the image for navigation and full screen controls

Vissaria Skoulida

Greece in Reverse

play this essay


Well this is panos (tamale)… I need to be honest with everyone about everything…She (Vissaria) photographs everything with a little kodak $100 camera…(maybe couple photos used my old D50 to shoot my “middle finger” photo, (yes that ugly middle finger is mine:), no fancy photoshop, no photo mechanic, no aperture, no fancy canons, nikons, leicas, smeicas…blah blah blah… I need to make it VERY VERY CLEAR… i NEVER ever MENTORED HER in any way…I never even tried to teach her how to turn the camera on (maybe because i didn’t want another venice beach homeless photographer in the making…laughing). If i influenced her in any way is because she would always see me with a camera around my neck, or my computer screen would permanently “stuck” on the BURN MAGAZINE webpage…Maybe we watched couple of burn essays here and there, if that….Not that i know for sure but i believe that she was conceived in Venice Beach….she is a little bit of an outlaw and very stubborn, smiling… So anyway, once again she practically lived half of her life in the plastic, fake , glamorous California and the rest half of her life (REMEMBER AGAIN, SHE IS ONLY 10 YEARS OLD little girl) in tortured Greece, in the small town called Arta…How funny? (ART)a… a little town that believe me that was nothing to do with art… but a lot to do with recession….I believe that after Vissaria moved from the Golden State to the Broken State, that definitely affected her…you will see that in her photos…Two things (i believe) “drive” her… Love and compassion…Im sure her heart breaks when she watches little starving homeless kids in her little town…Greece that ended up being something like our Detroit or Venice Beach…
ok, enough…i definitely failed to “describe” her personality but its all good..look at her essay/photos and the music she chosen is from a school choir…i will translate the song lyrics later..ok…done talking…
Ladies and gentlemen please enjoy the YOUNGEST and most TALENTED photog i ever met…My little niece Vissaria
(btw, her work is work in progress of course…so be patient there must be more coming up..Im thinking to use my next unemployment check and buy her a real Leica…laughing)



10 years old, little girl
Born in Santa Monica, LA, California, currently living in Greece… She loves ballet and music (flute)… Never worked a day in her life…laughing… only because the law forbids/prevents 10 year olds from working … In reality she is a HARD WORKER just like her mom… Vissaria started photographing and painting at age 5… currently recording the recession in Greece…


panos skoulidas – wandering in greece

Hover over the image for navigation and full screen controls


Panos Skoulidas

Wandering in Greece

play this essay


…I lived half of my life in Grecolandia…& half in Los Angeles….

Half of my life i was dressed up in sheep-skin and half of my life in plastic…

Half of my life i was riding donkeys and half driving wild mustangs…

Half of my life i was staring mustaches and half staring at platinum blond highlights..

It wasn’t curiosity that brought me back…im not here anyways but i’m not there either…

Homer made it back to Penelope..Made it back to Ithaca…

but Homer was a lier in the end..He lied to please the king…

but Kavafis…ahhh Kavafis told the truth…Its all about the travel..not the destination…

it’s the doomed , the holy trip to that imaginary Ithaca…the El Dorado does not exist…

it’s the search for the El Dorado that counts…

When i left from the “sheep” city to find my “el dorado” i made it to the “plastic” city…

Half of my life i was believing in Homer…

Half of my life later i realized that there are no El Dorados..Its just a vast endless ocean ahead..

that leads nowhere but …but im not afraid anymore..i can accept it not scared..

Things dont change..but we do..

Almost a month ago my boat decided to revisit…

Highway 61 Revisited as my good friend Bob Dylan said…

Above (essay) is what i i got connected with Grecolandia in the period of a month…

I’m riding a tired donkey once again…

I left my pirate ship back in venice beach to take a break…

Now im on the fast lane of that Grecolandia Highway 61 , speeding…on a slow donkey..

Reuniting, reconnecting with my family…

whats not to love?

Enjoy…because i dont know how long my “donkey” will last…



Panos Skoulidas bio,


the story of “Till Eulenspiegel”…

…According to the tradition, he was born in Grecolandia around 1300. He travelled through the Holy Roman Empire (Americanlandia , especially Northern US, but also the Low Countries, Bohemia, and Grecolandia. He is presented as a trickster or fool who played practical jokes on his contemporaries, exposing vices at every turn, greed and folly, hypocrisy and foolishness…With Eulenspiegel’s death occurs the entry of the embodied trickster-animus into the medium of things spiritual, the form of existence of pure spirituality so that the soul has seen through itself by way of its own spirituality and knows itself as living spiritual life: Eulenspiegel is still alive.The literal translation of the High German name “Eulenspiegel” gives “owl mirror”, two symbols that identify Till Eulenspiegel in crude popular woodcuts. However, the original Low German is believed to be ul’n Spegel, meaning “wipe the arse”.


Related links:



Editor’s note:

Comments are wide open on this essay.. Panos will surely jump in whenever he can..

Many thanks… david alan harvey

young tom – greece




Untitled, Greece by Young Tom


“Out of 
the sea, as if Homer himself had arranged it for me, the
 islands bobbed up, lonely, deserted, mysterious in the 
fading light. I couldn’t ask for more, nor did I want any­
thing more. I had everything a man could desire, and I 
knew it. I knew too that I might never have it again.”

Henry Miller

The Colossus of Maroussi

Emerging Photographer Fund 2015


Photo ©Vivian Maier

Vivian Maier was a remarkable woman. She was 29 when she made this self portrait. An emerging photographer nobody knew. Vivian is to be admired for her self deprecation. She just took pictures. She worked from the heart.

In the spirit of Vivian, who worked unaided by any publication or commercial shooting, I set up the Emerging Photographer Fund in 2007 to support exactly this kind of person. Someone who could use the funding to work on a project built from the heart. Young photographers like Vivian are out in the world now struggling  to earn a living doing what they love to do. I cannot solve this conundrum. Yet by seeking funders who can donate to the EPF through the non-profit Magnum Foundation, I was able to at least support some emerging photographers through BurnMagazine. All of us at Burn are very proud to be able to do this. We have done it on our own all this time. It is our primary objective at Burn to be able to do this and other projects in order to shed light on new talent. Our track record for this is set in stone.

We have never sought sponsors. Yet this year Fuji came to us in good spirit. They wanted to add to our $10,000. grant which came from private donors and create a Fuji $5,000 grant (plus equipment) for a photographer 25 or under. No strings attached for Burn. We are very pleased that Fuji wants to give someone a boost through Burn, yet we would not have done it if there were any corporate policy stipulations that would in any way corrupt our grant. Clean deal.

So we have a grand total of $15,000. to support an emerging photographer.

We do not care about your citizenship, your sex, your age, your religion, or anything about you except your work. We have an esteemed jury this year who will decide on the recipients of these two grants. I. One photographer over 25 will get one, and another photographer under 25 will get the other.  A talented and astute 22 year old could take it all in theory. You do not enter for two different awards. You just enter.

So step right up. You have until MAY 1, 2015 to get your act together. Too late to go shoot I suspect, yet not too late to start putting a body of work together in a serious way. If you think you have an honest chance, give it a go. If not, wait til next year.

The grant recipients will be announced first at the Festival of the Photograph on June 13th, 2015. The whole Burn team will be at Look3.

We hope to meet you there.

-david alan harvey-


Enter the Emerging Photographer Fund 2015 here!


Previous EPF Winners


The 2008 Emerging Photographer Fund grant was awarded to
Sean Gallagher for his essay on the environmental Desertification of China.

The 2009 Emerging Photographer Fund grant was awarded to
Alejandro Chaskielberg for his 8×10 format essay on the Parana River Delta ‘The High Tide’.

The 2010 Emerging Photographer Fund grant was awarded to
Davide Monteleone for his essay ‘Northern Caucasus’.

The 2011 Emerging Photographer Fund grant was awarded to
Irina Werning for her essay ‘Back to the Future’.

In 2012 three Emerging Photographer Fund grants were awarded:
one major to Matt Lutton for his essay ‘Only Unity’ and
two minors to Giovanni Cocco for his essay ‘Monia’ and to Simona Ghizzoni for her essay ‘Afterdark’.

In 2013 four Emerging Photographer Fund grants were awarded:
one major to Diana Markosian for her essay ‘My Father The Stranger’ and
three minors to: Iveta Vaivode for her essay ‘Somewhere on Disappearing Path’,
Oksana Yushko for her essay ‘Balklava: The Lost History’ and
Maciej Pisuk for his essay ‘Under The Skin; Photographs From Brzeska Street’.

In 2014 three Emerging Photographer Fund grants were awarded:
one major to Alessandro Penso for his essay ‘Lost Generation : This is the Story of Young, Unaccompanied Migrants in Greece’,
two minors to: Birte Kaufmann for her essay ‘The Travellers – Ireland`s Biggest Minority Group’ and
Kiana Hayeri for her essay ‘“Jense Degar” (The Other Sex)’

 Past jurors include: Carol Nagar, Martin Parr, Gilles Peress, Eugene Richards, Maggie Steber, Fred Ritchin, Bruce Gilden, David Griffin, John Gossage, Susan Meiselas, James Nachtwey, Mauro Bedoni, Jim Estrin, Donna Ferrato, and Erik Vroons.


antonis damolis – till life

Emerging Photographer Fund – 2014 Shortlist


Hover over the image for navigation and full screen controls

Antonis Damolis

Till Life

play this essay


This series is inspired by the skyscapes of William Eggleston. I wanted to capture the still, vast blue hues of the skies and the seas (as the sky’s reflection). Whilst imagining the serenity of capturing such a minimalistic subject, I noticed the images would often be disturbed by various events. Birds flying through, a plane cruising over or the sun, demanding all attention by beaming its rays directly in my lens. I became fascinated by these disturbances and pretty soon they became the subject of this series. The intruders of the still life, became part of the other wordly skyscapes.



I was born in 1980 in Crete, Greece, where I live and work. I take photograhs in a continuous mode since 2009.


Related links

Antonis Damolis

Emerging Photographer Fund 2015

Emerging Photographer Fund 2015

Youth Denied: Young Migrants in Greece

Photo © Alessandro Penso, EPF 2014 Winner


Now is the time for some of you to start thinking about our Emerging Photographer Fund for 2015…

We will have at least $10,000. grant funding for an emerging photographer to finish a current project or begin a new one based on previous work.

Those of us on the Burn team are very proud to be able to support this grant for a photographer who might indeed be relatively unknown today, but will be an icon tomorrow.
An esteemed EPF Jury will be selected to choose the grant recipient.
We will announce the recipient at the LOOK 3 Festival of the Photograph in June of 2015….
The deadline for submission is May 1, 2015.
Please see our submissions page
I started this grant on my old Road Trips blog back in 2007 with my own money. Since then generous anonymous donors to Burn through the Magnum Foundation have kept the EPF alive and flourishing.
Please take a close look at your own work. Think body of work and/or narrative. Your work may be of either journalistic or artistic imperative. We are simply looking for serious work of any type where funding would help in the completion of this work. Authorship is the key.


Call for submissions


The Emerging Photographer Fund 2015 is now open for submissions!

The deadline for entry is May 1st, 2015 (6pm PST)

The winner will receive $10,000
and other awards will be announced soon.

Enter here!


More information here:

daniel etter – 41,000 kilometers

Hover over the image for navigation and full screen controls



Daniel Etter

41,000 Kilometers

play this essay


41,000 Kilometers is the length of the European Union’s southern sea and eastern land borders. Here, the EU has fortified itself against refugees and economic migrants trying to reach its prosperity and security. It is also the scene of the EU’s biggest failure. Since land borders are tightly controlled, refugees and migrants are forced towards the dangerous sea borders. This year, more than 70,000 people crossed the Mediterranean from North Africa to Italy – twice as many as in the whole of 2013. Since 2000, at least 23,000 people have died on this route. “41,000 Kilometers” documents the lives of those trying to enter the European Union illegally. It spans from Morocco over Libya, Turkey and Greece to Serbia.



Daniel Etter is a freelance photographer, feature writer and videographer currently based in Berlin, Germany. He is a graduate of the German School of Journalism, holds a master degree in political science, a university diploma in journalism and is a recipient of the Kathryn Davis Fellowship for Peace.

His photography has appeared in The New York Times, TIME Magazine, Newsweek, Stern and many others. His photo from the Gezi Park Protests in Istanbul was chosen as one of the best photos of 2013 by TIME and The New York Times. He was awarded with the Award of Excellence of the Alexia Foundation, has been nominated for the UNICEF Picture of the Year Award and won an Award of Excellence at Pictures of the Year International.

His writing has appeared in several major German publications such as Sueddeutsche Zeitung, Financial Times Germany,, Neon and various others. For his stories he has received the Axel Springer Award and the Hans Buchrucker Award.

Related links

Daniel Etter





Screen Shot 2014-03-04 at 2.07.41 PM

Hopefully tomorrow the skies will be filled with kites. The tradition in Greece is to fly a kite on the first day of Lent.@myrtophoto



I met Mustafa at this dodgy cafe on Omonoia square in Athens. He comes from Egypt, he is nineteen years old, married with a daughter. He came to Greece as an irregular immigrant and he works as a male prostitute. He didn’t want me to take his picture because of his daughter yet he offered to bring a picture from before he worked as a prostitute. I didn’t use it but I asked him to write down his story for me and this is what he wrote..
I treasure these stories and the time of the people I meet. For “The Attendants” project @myrtophoto this week on @burndiary

Ray of Light


One thing that is still keeping me in Greece is the light and the weather. In a chaotic city like Athens especially in these difficult times, a ray of light can often seem like an oasis./ Pavlos in the car. Photo by Myrto Papadopoulos @myrtophoto this week for @burndiary



Hello! This is my first post for @burndiary. This week I’ll be contributing with some pictures of my daily life in Athens, Greece. This includes my personal project “The Attendants” a project that focuses on prostitution and moments from my life in the city. #inside the Ministry of Development, on assignment for Die Zeit. Photo by Myrto Papadopoulos @myrtophoto

dimitris michalakis – burnout

Emerging Photographer Fund – 2013 Finalist


Hover over the image for navigation and full screen controls



Dimitris Michalakis


play this essay


Large demostrations in Athens since 2010, police repression, violence and irrational use of tear gas, 3500 suicides, massive unemployment (26%) and unpaid work – two out of three young people are unemployed – abolition of health structures in the public sector, closure of mentally ill units, hundreds pawnshops mushrooming all over the country, huge increase in drug addicts and prostitution, homeless people and people who found themselves in the streets, continuous strikes are the consequences of the economic crisis in Greece.

This crisis is not just a financial one. It is a systemic crisis with multiple dimensions; political, social and cultural ones. It is in fact a historical breakthrough and all options for the future are open. The country actually lives in war conditions.

I have been reading about Weimar Republic in Germany in the 1920s, the financial crash of 1929 in America, the oil crisis of the 70’s. Now, in Greece history seems to repeat itself in variations.

Half of my friends are unemployed, my parents kept warm with a little stove as they couldn’t afford heating oil this year, my father, in a poor health condition, will soon complete 50 years of work, most of them spent in two jobs, my sister emigrated after having been unemployed, an elderly man I met in the center of Athens sold his gold teeth for a few euros, in my neighborhood workers in one of the largest steel mill of the country went on strike for 272 days after the dismissal of 110 colleagues and a 50% pay cut.

I have traveled and seen countries full of misery, poverty and violence, I have been always moved, but I couldn’t really empathize. In Egypt, where I traveled in 2009, youth unemployement was 90%. In Greece youth unemployment has now reached 65%.

It all begins from my surroundings and ends up on me. Burnout has to do with my own crisis too; I do know it is a part of my life deeply experiential that started four years ago, but i still do not know when and how it will end.



Dimitris Michalakis was born in 1977 in Elefsina, Greece. He studied photography at the Focus School of Photography in Athens. Since 2004 he has been a regular contributor to K Magazine, (Kathimerini Sunday edition), and the E Magazine (Eleytherotypia Sunday edition). His photographs have been published in various Greek and international publications (Spiegel, Die Zeit, Rolling Stones Magazine). He has traveled on journalistic missions to more than 30 countries, mainly in ex Soviet Countries.

Solo Exhibitions:

2013: ‘Burnout’ (in progress), Coalmine Gallery, Zurich, Swiss

2010: ‘NATO Avenue’, Cheapart Gallery, Athens, / Thessaloniki Biennial, Greece

2008: ‘Old School’ Sen Yung, China Gamma Photo Agency China’s Cultural Olympiad

Group Exhibitions:

2012: ‘NATO Avenue’, LUMIX Festival for  Young Photojournalism,Hannover, Germany

2011: ‘Muslim World’, Sismanoglio Megaro, Istanbul, Turkey

2011: ‘NATO Avenue’, Bursa’s Photography Festival, Turkey


Related links

Dimitris Michalakis



david favrod – gaijin

Emerging Photographer Fund – 2013 Finalist


Hover over the image for navigation and full screen controls


David Favrod


play this essay



is a japanese word meaning ‘the foreigner’

“For a Swiss, I am a Japanese and for a Japanese I am a Swiss or rather a gaijin.”

My name is David ‘Takashi’ Favrod. I was born on the 2nd of July 1982 in Kobe, Japan, of a Japanese mother and a Swiss father. When I was 6 months old, my parents decided to come and live in Switzerland, more precisely in Vionnaz, a little village in lower Valais. As my father had to travel for his work a lot, I was mainly brought up by my mother who taught me her principles and her culture.

When I was 18, I asked for double nationality at the Japanese embassy, but they refused, because it is only given to Japanese women who wish to obtain their husband’s nationality.

It is from this feeling of rejection and also from a desire to prove that I am as Japanese as I am Swiss that this work was created. ‘Gaijin’ is a fictional narrative, a tool for my quest for identity, where self-portraits imply an intimate and solitary relationship that I have with myself. The mirror image is frozen in a figurative alter ego that serves as an anchor point.

The aim of this work is to create ‘my own Japan’, in Switzerland, from memories of my journeys when I was small, my mother’s stories, popular and traditional culture and my grandparents war narratives.





“Gaijin” Stephan Witschi Gallery, Zurich, Switzerland

“Gaijin” Center for Contemporary Art (CCA), Santa Fe, USA

“Gaijin” La Petite Poule Noire Gallery, Paris, France


“Gaijin” John Schmid Gallery, Basel, Switzerland

“Gaijin” Crochetan Gallery, Monthey, Switzerland


“Gaijin” Aperture Foundation, New-York, USA

“Gaijin” Athens Photo Festival 2011 the Hellenic Centre for Photography, Athens, Greece (with catalogue)

“Gaijin” Fotografia Festival 2011: Motherland the Pastificio Cerere Foundation, Roma, Italy (with catalogue)

“Gaijin” Stimultania Gallery, Strasbourg, France


Winner of the ‘Project Launch Award 2013′ Center, Santa Fe, USA

Selected for the ’28e Festival International de mode et photo 2013′, Hyères, France

Hey, Hot Shot 2012, New-York, USA

Winner of the ‘Aperture Portfolio Prize 2010′, New-York, USA

Winner of the ‘Swiss Design Award 2010′, Bern, Switzerland


Related links

David Favrod



myrto papadopoulos – the attendants


Myrto Papadopoulos

The Attendants


At the beginning my natural necessity was to enter the world of the sex industry and talk to the women that are involved in it. It has taken me a really long time and effort to reach out to some of these women, to gain their trust and get finally the access today to document their lives. Also my intensive research (i.e. approaching NGO’s, doctors and expertise from the ministry of foreign affairs) has helped me to understand more the issues and the difference between prostitution and trafficking. Throughout the year I will be working voluntarily with the “Salvation Army”, in Greece, in order to provide support to these women. I will also be teaching photography lessons in one of the new “safe houses” that will be opening in Athens, within the next year.


Your support will enable me not only to continue this project but mostly it will help me gain more insight into the understanding of how and why prostitution is constantly evolving. My deep personal interest in these women, make me want to record their struggle but also their strive in search of a better life. It is also one of my fondest heart’s desires, to be able to share with these women my experiences through photography, because I believe photography can be an effective tool of building self-esteem.

The financial support will provide me the time and tools that I need to be able to accomplish and document this very difficult topic.


You can support the project on



Myrto Papadopoulos (b. 1978, Athens) finished her studies in 2003 after completing a five-year Fine Arts degree in painting and photography. In 2006, she applied for a photojournalism degree at the ICP (International Centre of Photography) in NYC where she was granted a scholarship. In 2007 she participated at the Eddie Adams workshop in NYC.

She has won various awards and nominations and has taken part in several exhibitions including the Mois Off de la Photo 08 in Paris, the PHOTOQUAI 2em Biennal du Monde 09 at the Museé Quai Branly in Paris the New York Photo Festival 09, the Biennale of young artists of Europe XIV bjcem 09, the LOOK3 Between Festival 2010, the DUMBO Arts Festival 2011 in Brooklyn NY, the Athens Photo Festival 2011, 2012 and more. Today she works as a freelance photographer and filmmaker and is represented by Redux pictures in NY.

Her clients include TIME Magazine, Le Monde, GEO, Corriere della sera, EL Mundo, La Stampa, Neue Zuger Zeitung, Vision Magazine, DAS Magazine, Diario magazine, National Geographic Magazine (Greece), K magazine (Kathimerini), among others.


Related links

Myrto Papadopoulos

The New Plastic Road


michal solarski – hungarian sea

Hover over the image for navigation and full screen controls

Michal Solarski

Hungarian Sea

play this essay


The Hungarian Lake Balaton is the largest in Central Europe.

As Hungary is landlocked, the lake is often called the Hungarian Sea. From the 1960’s onwards, Balaton became a major destination for ordinary working Hungarians as well as for those from the Eastern side of the Iron Curtain, who were rewarded for their work in building socialism with a permit to travel across the border.

As we could not dream of traveling to Spain, Italy or Greece, Balaton was the closest and most achievable destination for ordinary Poles to see what’s out there. My family and I were among the lucky ones who could go and spend holidays in what appeared to us as a paradise. Equipped with government-issued food vouchers and some little amount of pocket money in local currency, we were heading South to a warm, colourful and pleasant place. For us, coming from sad, cold and almost monochromatically grey Poland it was like a window to the world.

Twenty-odd years later, going through the pages of my family album, I found only one photograph of Balaton. It was a blurry picture of me, my sister and my parents, that was taken somewhere on one of the lake’s piers. This snapshot was the only reminiscence of six subsequent summers spent by the lake.

The photographs below are my attempt to create what my parents failed to do. I try to see the world through the eyes of a little boy who used to holiday there with his parents and sister over twenty years ago. Strolling among ruins of the glamorous (back in the day) concrete villas of Castro, Brezhnev and Honecker, the memories start to flood back.

Balaton has hardly changed, it is almost exactly the same as when I left it. Perhaps a bit more rusty, but the atmosphere remained the same. Only now for me it is no longer a paradise. I have grown and changed.

‘Hungarian Sea’ is a part of the bigger body of work about the summer holiday resorts in post-communist countries. It will be continued in the region of the Black Sea and the Baltic Sea.



Michal was born in Poland. After graduating from University, where he got a distinction for his studies, he decided to go to London to pursue his career as a photographer. After a few years doing odd jobs, he finally established himself as one.

He divides his professional career between advertising and documentary photography, traveling extensively between the UK and Eastern Europe, where he produces his documentary work. Most of it is strongly based on his own background and experiences.

He is the winner of 2012 Flash Forward UK, and his work has been published in GQ Magazine, The Mail on Sunday, and Finch’s Quarterly Review.


Related links

Michal Solarski