Letizia Battaglia (b. Sicily, 1935) began her photography career as a photojournalist, taking images to improve the commercial viability of her articles. In 1974, she began to take photographs of the Sicilian Mafia, persevering despite receiving death threats.
Letizia eventually became the photography director of L’Ora, Palermo’s left-wing daily newspaper. Before the paper was forced to close in 1990, Letizia – alongside her assistants and long-time partner Franco Zecchin – captured photographs of crime scenes which constituted the face of the Sicilian Mafia throughout the world.
Letizia has won several major awards, including the W. Eugene Smith Grant for Humanistic Photography and the Cornell Capa Infinity Award from the International Center of Photography.