"I like the fact that I am not in control, that the photographs are what happens, rather than the result only of the decision I make. You could say that’s the downside of photography, but it’s also why it is magic"

- Thomas Dworzak

b. 1972


Based in Paris, France


Available for commissions
& assignments

Born in Germany in 1972, Thomas Dworzak has documented many of the most important news stories since the 1990s. At the age of 16, he started traveling to photograph conflicts in Northern Ireland, Israel/Palestine, and the disintegrating Yugoslavia. After he left his native Germany, he combined his attempt to become a photographer with an effort to study languages: Spanish in Ávila, Czech in Prague, and Russian in Moscow. During the 1990s, Dworzak lived in Georgia, exploring the people, culture, and conflicts in the Caucasus, which resulted in the book Kavkaz in 2010.

A months-long assignment for the New Yorker in Afghanistan, where Dworzak discovered studio portraits of the Taliban, became his first book, Taliban (2003). Images taken during his many assignments in Iraq, most of which were shot for Time magazine, were used to create his next book, M*A*S*H IRAQ (2007). Since then, Dworzak has gone on to photograph the revolutions in the former Soviet republics of Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, and Ukraine, and to cover stories in dozens of countries. In a recent project, Feldpost (2013–18), he photographed the “memory” of the First World War in more than 80 countries, producing 1568 “postcards” (one for every day of the war). It was completed on November 11, 2018, exactly 100 years after the end of the conflict.

Dworzak is also a keen curator, with a particular interest in digital culture. His work mining Instagram memes under various hashtags, ranging from animals dressed as the Pope to the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombing, has resulted in twenty sketchbooks compiled of his findings.

When covering the 2015 refugee crisis, Dworzak conceived Europe – a photographic guide for refugees, which was produced and distributed free of charge to migrants. His current long-term project, War Games, was interrupted at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, whereupon he explored and photographed almost exclusively the new virtual “Zoom” world. In 2021, his 2003–18 documentation of Georgian troops in the “war on terror” was published as a feature-film screenplay/photobook, Khidi – The Bridge. Dworzak became a Magnum Photos nominee in 2000 and a full member in 2004.

He was president of Magnum from 2017 to 2020

Selected works


Beyond Sochi

Thomas Dworzak

In the build up the 2014 Winter Olympics Thomas Dworzak documents the transformation of the Russian seaside city of Sochi

Open story
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