Leica Women Foto Project


Meet the 2023 Awardees


The Leica Women Foto Project serves to empower the female perspective and its impact on today’s visual stories. We believe the shape of a story is reactive to the storyteller’s perspective, developing a narrative that too often is reflective of individual truths. The Leica Women Foto Project encourages diversity and inclusion in visual storytelling to amplify voices typically underrepresented in photography, discovering the breadth of shapes formed by a single story.​ Conceived in 2019, the initiative has evolved to offer cash awards and business opportunities and Leica equipment to serve the female perspective in the world of photography.


In 2023 the Award expanded to residents of the US, UK, Mexico, and Canada (excluding Québec), where one applicant from each region was awarded a Leica SL2-S camera set and $10,000 USD. We are pleased to announce the awardees.


Meet the 2023 Leica Women Foto Project Awardees


Left Behind 
Mary F. Calvert | USA


Concentrating on documenting social justice issues neglected by the media at large, photographer Mary Calvert has focused her attention for the past nine years on documenting military sexual abuse (MST) in the United States Armed Forces. In her shattering project Left Behind, Calvert draws attention to the impact of MST on victims and their families, as well as the scars of trauma that are left long after events of sexual assault.

Artic: The Darkest Hours
Anna Filipova | UK


Choosing to explore unique environmental and scientific topics based in remote and inaccessible areas, UK-based visual journalist Anna Filipova uses captivating imagery and compelling stories to raise awareness for climate change. Her winning project, ARCTIC: THE DARKEST HOURS, explores Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard where the largest laboratory for modern Arctic research is housed, along with research scientists who make up most of the population. This area has the cleanest air on Earth, but also receives circulated air from Europe and North America, allowing for extensive research of post global warming conditions.

Eli Farinango | Canada 

Eli Farinango, this year’s winner from Canada, explores the vastness and beauty of the healing journey through her documentary photography, exploring the spaces to reclaim ancestral memory through image-making and collaborative processes. Born in Kichwa territory in Ecuador and raised in Algonquin territory in Canada, Farinango's winning project, Wilkay, traces the artist's experience of transformation and healing from abuse and mental illness, allowing her to reconnect with her roots, family, and ancestors in the process.

Substitute Mother
Greta Rico | Mexico 

Inspired by the artist’s own family history, Mexican documentary photographer Greta Gomez Rico’s harrowing and illuminating project, Substitute Mother, tells the story of her cousin Siomara, who became a “Substitute Mother“ to her 3-year-old niece following her mother’s murder. This project shows how femicide does not end with murder, but has psychosocial impacts that cause trauma in orphan children, in mothers, sisters, grandmothers and aunts who become “Substitute Mothers“ due to violence.

Call for entries for the 2024 award will be announced this Fall