Trapped in Greece

Shortlist 2021

Angelos Tzortzinis

Angelos Tzortzinis is a documentary photographer. He was born in Athens, where he finished his studies at the Leica Academy of Creative Photography. Angelos work has been recognized with several awards such as Best Wire Photographer by Time Magazine 2015, Magnum Foundation, World Press Photo, POYi, Sony award, Visa Pour lImage among others. Since 2007 he works as freelance in Athens.
The Problem
2021

Trapped in Greece

I have been working on the migration issue for the last eight years. This project researches human and social adaptability. According to a UNHCR report in March 2016, more than one million people, mostly refugees from Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan, had crossed the Greek border since 2015. As soon as Balkan and European countries north of Greece began closing their borders to incoming migrants, more than 90,000 people were left trapped in Greece - in camps or on the streets. The camp of Moria was the largest refugee camp in Europe until it burned down in a fire in September 2020. By the summer of 2020, approximately 20,000 people were living in a camp built to accommodate 3,000. Residents complained of rain, cold, illness, lack of food and safety, unsanitary toilets, and water shortages. The fire, which broke out on September 9, almost destroyed the camp. By the end of 2019, almost 8,000 refugees lived on the nearby island of Samos in a former military base with the capacity to hold only 650. This project was shot on Samos and Lesbos, and in refugee camps around Greece.