Legendary photographer Letizia Battaglia, whose striking photographs revealed the hidden world of the Sicilian Mafia and their victims, has died at the age of 87.
Born and raised in Palermo, Letizia married at 16 to escape her jealous father. After raising three daughters, she divorced and travelled to Milan intending to work as a writer.
She took up photography at the age of 37, after the Milanese newspapers to which she submitted her articles requested images to accompany the text. A friend gave her a camera, and Letizia got to work, eventually directing a photographic team in Palermo for the newspaper L’Ora. With the Sicilian Mafia at its height on the streets of 1970s and 1980s Palermo, their terrible activities quickly became the focus of Letizia’s work.