hidden features

maria litwa (de/pl)

NOOR - Jews leaving Europe

Maria Litwa is a German freelance photographer and filmmaker with Polish roots, born in 1982. 


She is particularly interested in issues concerning migration and its psychological impact on people. Through her work she is raising questions about the complex correlation of place and identity. Beyond her self-initiated stories she works for various editorial and corporate clients and NGOs, mainly doing portraiture and reportage assignments. She has worked in Iraq, Bangladesh, Israel, Gaza, Yemen, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Hungary, Nicaragua and Costa Rica.


Maria Litwa’s work has been exhibited internationally at noted art and photography festivals such as The New York Photo Awards, The Delhi Photo Festival, Berlin Fotofestival – The Browse, Darmstädter Tage der Fotografie and The International Festival Sarajevo Winter, amongst others. In 2013 her short film ‘Inside Geneva Camp’ was broadcast on German TV and featured in the online magazine of The Inge Morath Foundation/Magnum Photos. 


She studied photography and communication design at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts, FH Dortmund.




Anti-Semitism in Europe seems to be spreading anew, increasingly in form of attacks. France has suffered the worst violence and the numbers prove the trend of a new Jewish emigration wave. Hungary is facing a strong rightwing growth within society and in politics, and the creeping development that reminds me of the very beginnings of a black spot of European history, is rather ignored by the Jewish community.


My story is about European Jews, who don’t feel safe anymore within their society. Who are at times scared up to a paranoid level, and who take the decision to leave their home countries. While searching for a family or an individual that allows me to follow to get a deeper insight and reveal the emotional side of the story, I interviewed people that are seeking for a safe space, a new home. I photographed the atmosphere around them, around us, connecting historical roots and current events.


These images are taken in France, Hungary and Israel. 

Young man walking on a street in Budapest, Hungary, 31.10.2015
Paris Terror Attacks - Geiselnahme juedischer Supermarkt