Women refugee photographers contributed to visual arts education in Britain through their affiliations with the Warburg Institute. This cultural organisation was itself a refugee, having relocated the entirety of its library, collections and staff from Hamburg to London in 1933.
A major aim of the Warburg Institute was to bring art to broad public audiences. This aim was pursued through the extensive documentation of antiquities, paintings, and architecture. For Heidi Heimann and Erna Mandowsky, working in the photographic department at the Warburg Institute enabled them to resume their careers as art historians.