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


12 thoughts on “Myrto Papadopoulos – The Attendants”

  1. Very proud of you Myrto!
    Congratulations for being published in Burn..
    (And big thanks to Burn editors for paying attention and supporting Myrto)
    Good afternoon y’all from beautiful Mexico City…the city of love and freedom !!!

  2. Does anyone think the 10,000th story on this subject is going to make any difference at all?

    I realize a photographer has got to make a living which seems, ironically, a distinction without a difference in this case.

  3. Although the photographer shows a good sense of aesthetics, I did not see a whole lot of insight on how she will tackle the issue of prostitution. Most of the pictures shown here seemed to perpetuate the practice of prostitution and did not seem to criticize it. She didn´t show her point of view. At least not photographically speaking.

  4. First of all Big Congratulations Myrto on having your presentation published at BURN and for sharing with us your experience. I hope and trust your project will be funded and what better way to showcase your project than at Burn and through Emphasis :))….

    I know that this is a short pitch documentary and that your hope is to delve and to explore the lives of the women whose jobs are prostitutes and i really do hope you are able to delve further into the world between the choice of being a prostitute and those who are traffic’d. It was difficult for me to discern the difference here. Examining the lives of these women, seems to me, is a particularly salient project at the moment given what is happening in Greece these last 2 1/2 years and may make for quite a rich story resonant of many of the hypocricies that exist in Greece (all nations) particularly as they apply to economic austerity (read: severity) measure (the wealthy never seem to suffer, do they during times of political/economic ‘austerity’).

    What interests me about this project is less about the sex/world-of-prostitution than it is how these women engage in the very real and troubled reality that is the current economic/political situation in greece. that may sound hi falutent, but I’ve known 2 woman who’ve been escorts (one dealing with politicians/’wealthy’ and one a student dealing with the rest of folk) and both suggested that they see and know more about the lives around (and at the top) than most sitting around watching tv and feeding upon the media’s depiction….because of what has happened in greece, there just seems a rich vein of stories here that may just be off the norm of most documentaries about prostitution…or even traffic’ing in the reality of present day greece…

    anyway, best of luck and I hope it goes well for you and these women


  5. mauriciolopezch expressed my initial reaction pretty well. Sex sells on so many levels, eh? That, and I find it hard to imagine how a photographer can effectively “bring awareness” to the issue, no matter how effective the photographs, short of working with a high-end writer and publishing in a widely read newspaper or magazine. Or possibly with an NGO if the photos would be good for their fundraising. Worthy cause though. Certainly hope your efforts do some good.

  6. Continued… I think you would have much better success bringing awareness to the issue if you were to photograph the men who provide the demand for the sex trafficking and the temptation for women in economic distress to turn to prostitution. Get closeups of their faces, pictures of their cars, businesses, bosses, houses, wives and daughters. That would bring some awareness fast. These boudoir type shots are more likely to serve as advertisements. Put the focus on the perpetrators, not the victims.

  7. This is a tough one – given the fact the theme of prostitution and trafficking has been so thoroughly covered in so many ways and, right at this moment, there are probably how many thousand photographers/videographers working on their own versions. I trust that by the time you complete this essay, you will create work that informs me and increases my understanding but I don’t see that yet.

    While there statements may seem a bit at odds with each other, I tend to agree with both Imants and MW. It would be great to somehow truly wrap the men patronizing these women into the story, not necessarily just in furtive glimpses to humiliate them or embarrass them and their wives and daughters, but to seek out and try to illuminate the forces within them that drive them to seek out the women you are working with.

    This would be one hell of a challenge, but it would raise your essay to a new level, I think.

  8. @Jim Powers

    There are at least two reductia ad absurdum in your comment.

    1. That all possible stories have been told and that consequently we should kill ourselves now.

    2. That the only way to “make a difference” is to completely solve a problem. It is not difficult to argue that if one person is helped — if one person does not contract HIV or go into liver failure due to hepatitis, for example — a difference has been made.

    The arcs of other peoples’ lives are not worth less than your photographic ego.

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