Culture - NOMINEE: Dorothee Nowak
Tell me her story because war is only the half of it.
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'Tell me her story because war' is only the half of it is a documentary project based on my family immigration history from Poland to France in 1938.
The project focuses on the journey my grandmother, Teresa, began with her family when she was 11 years old. Born in 1927, she was raised in Ostrow Wielkopolski (Poland) which was, before the end of World War II, in the Republic of Germany’s territory. Her family left on the eve of the Second World War and arrived first in Belgium before establishing themselves in France.
The documentary project focuses in known places in France as I took my father to re-visit places of his childhood with his mother, as well as the birthplace of Teresa in Poland. The series mixes portraits of family member and archives in order to create a linear yet nonchronological portrait of a family who escaped her homeland on the eve of the Second World War.
Teresa's story is not as obvious as it seems to be and I believe there is more. Yet, the research done in Poland has not been successful and the story of Teresa and her mother, Jozefa, still remain hidden. 'Tell me her story because war is only the half of it' is about my quest in order to find out more about her.
Dorothee E.Nowak is a French photographer based in Montreal.
After her Master in Visual Arts from the Valenciennes University in 2007, she decides to travel and explores Canada, Australia and Asia before settling down in Japan for a few months. She returns to Montreal to finish her study in photography in 2014. In 2017, she graduated with a BA in photography with Distinction from Concordia University.
The subject of immigration is in the center of her work since she met the migrants living in Calais and documented them in a series entitled "Transit." It was in Montreal that Dorothee became more interested in its origins and to the Polish community. She photographed several members of the Polish community in their home and document its meetings in the series "Dom Polski". Her photographic work explores notions of migration and the subject of displacement.