Self Portrait, 1942
Julia emigrated to Belgium in 1934 where she studied photography and married Jean Pirotte, a labor activist in Brussels. In may 1940, after the German occupation of Belgium and the deportation of her husband, Pirotte made her way to southern France. There she played an active role in Jewish and Franch resistance groups. Based in Marseille, she worked as a photojournalist for Dimanche Illustre and served as a courier for weapons, false papers and underground publications. During this time, she took numerous photographs documenting life under the Vichy Regime. As a member of the Francs-Tireurs et Partisans, , she was able to photograph the activities of the Maquis resistance in the summer of 1944 and the liberation of Marseille.
Portrait taken by her
Her sister Mindla Maria Diament was also a member of the French Resistance. She was captured, tortured and executed by the Vichy Regime and died on 24 August 1944.