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August 20, 2009
© Dana Popa, from the new photo book, "not Natasha"
Photographer Dana Popa travelled to the Republic of Moldova to document, through photography and collected stories, the experiences of sex-trafficked women and their families. ‘Natasha’ is the nickname given to prostitutes with Eastern European looks. Sex trafficked girls hate it.
Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Moldova is one of the main trafficking source countries for women and children. It is estimated that between 200,000 and 400,000 women have been sold into prostitution abroad – up to 10% of the female population. In Moldova, Popa worked with the International Organisation for Migration Shelters and Winlock International where she was given access to photograph and document the experiences of 17 women who had been trafficked.
Read text by Dana Popa, and see more photos from her series, in Lens Culture.
This work was commissioned by Autograph ABP, and won the Jerwood Photography Award. It is currently on display in London at Photofusion Gallery through September 18, 2009. You can also buy the book, with more insightful essays about this worldwide problem.