American photographer Sara Naomi Lewkowicz is the winner of two World Press Photo Awards in 2014 and 2016, as well as Sony World Organization L’Iris D’Or 2014 and is a member of the World Press Photo jury. Remi Ochlik received the prestigious Ville de Perpignan Award for her article in Time magazine “Photographer as a Witness: A Portrait of Domestic Violence”. She holds a master’s degree from the University of Ohio in the field of visual communications. In 2013, she was awarded the Alexia Foundation Student Grant for sending her to London. Other awards and recognitions include the World Report Award and Pictures of the Year International. Her work has been published in magazines such as Time, Der Spiegel, Stern, New York Magazine, and many others. Significant projects she worked on were Closer to Heaven, Almost twins, Maggie as well as interesting portraits of ordinary people in their everyday lives.
The audience gets acquainted with the problem of addiction and the use of hard drugs through the story and development path of the girl Alex. The harrowing scenes of a heroin vortex, working in a strip club, searching for a place to stay, and a conflict with the law are the basis of a five-year project called Closer to Heaven. When it is already certain that there will be no return from the deep abyss, the rehabilitation process begins. There is reintegration into social life. From dark basements and smoky bars, we climb into the bright halls of support centers for former addicts. Realistic and brutally honest photos call for empathy and reflection on perseverance and the desire for a new beginning.