Women Gaze

Kayee C, LAU Wai, Anat GIVON, Catherine HENRIETTE

4 March - 25 April 2021


La Galerie chooses to exhibit works by four women photographers. LAU Wai and Kayee C express the unique viewpoints of the new generation. They were both born in Hong Kong and with international experience. Anat Givon and Catherine Henriette were born in Israel and France respectively, and lived in Asia for years. Both nourished their artworks with their former experiences as photojournalists.



The works by LAU Wai and Kayee C show a very personal perspective on our society, questioning both self and social identities. Both artists construct narratives of oneself and the connection with our surroundings through familiar yet uncanny scenarios.

While LAU Wai mixes reality with fictional heroes or past images with reinvented present, Kayee C plays with her own images by setting up fictional scenarios inspired by historical paintings. Both reveal a contemporary questioning: Who are we in our society? What do we expect? And who are we being expected to be?

Catherine Henriette and Anat Givon find the inner beauty of our environment and transform our present moment into art pieces, revealing its inner value. Catherine Henriette questions our modern changes and enhances the beauty of China, while Anat Givon researches pure aesthetic emotion immersed in the vibrant city of Hong Kong.

The field of photography has long been dominated by men. As photojournalists and artists, these four women show their engagement in our contemporary questioning.

Kayee C

Kayee C is a fine art photographer born and raised in Hong Kong before relocating to France a decade ago. She uses techniques of self-portrait and digital composite to create storytelling images to explore the dynamics of relationships on different levels. Her works can be humorous, dramatic or melancholic staging of a variety of human interactions.

Her favourite subject above all is the paradox between social disconnect and our desire to belong. She attempts to offer a critical, offbeat and sometimes poetic look on the way we relate to each other. Kayee’s works can be seen as a whole narrative piece in which each element tells its own story. Many of the photos were inspired by classical paintings.

Kayee’s works were exhibited in Rome, Venice (Italy) and Glasgow (Scotland) in 2020.

Lau Wai

Born in Hong Kong, Lau Wai currently lives and works in New York and Hong Kong. Her work utilizes photography, video, drawing, and installation exploring the multilateral constructions of identity in relation to race, gender, and the notion of belonging. She attempts to investigate how history, fiction, personal memory, and virtuality collided in the process of identity formation through personal and historical archives, cinematic imagery, popular culture, and digital media.

Lau’s work are in the permanent collections at M+ (Hong Kong); The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (United States), among others. She has exhibited in Europe, Asia, and the United States, including Kunstmuseum Brandts (Denmark); Power Station of Art (Shanghai); Para Site (Hong Kong); Tai Kwun Contemporary (Hong Kong); Kuandu Biennale (Taiwan); Echigo-Tsumari Art Triennale (Japan); The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (United States) and Yokohama Triennale 2020 (Japan), among others.

Anat Givon

Born in Israel, Anat Givon came to Hong Kong as a press photographer to cover the 1997 Handover. She now lives and works in Hong Kong.

Having also reported from conflict zones and documenting anything from violent conflicts through politics and economics, to sports, in the Middle East and throughout South East Asia; many of Anat’s pictures have told the world of some harrowing stories. After years of witnessing and portraying violence, death and destruction as well as growth and development through her camera lens, Anat now uses her talent and passion to create innovative pieces of art that are subjective and can be enjoyed as personal interpretations rather than “objective” journalistic accounts.

"From photojournalism I learnt the discipline of capturing an event in one frame taken at the exact, decisive moment when as many of the story’s elements are assembled in the viewfinder (…) But then I wanted to do more, I wanted to take the captured image further, I wanted it to convey to the viewer what I felt at the moment of taking the picture. That’s where I depart from the objectivity of photojournalism and the use of digital tools enters the picture.”

Combining and manipulating images through digital art Anat introduces, a somewhat surrealistic twist to her distinctive work whilst still relying on basic photographic aesthetics of proportions within a set frame, play of light and shadow, saturated colours or monochromes, to transform images into unique art.

Catherine Henriette

Born in France, Catherine Henriette studied Photography and Chinese. She lived in China between 1985 and 1991 and began a career as a press photographer. She now lives and works in France.

For around thirty years, Catherine has been observing China, with its economic, cultural and social evolution. Thirty years in which the pulse of the country has been rising, things have been moving so fast. As a firsthand witness to this frenzy, Catherine paused time with her Leica camera and rolls of film. With the modern China as her backdrop, she has captured the vanishing points and figures, and photographed them like a shifting mirage.

"The patient waiting for pure lines and outlines, the subtle constancy of the emerging image… It was like a tale halfway between reality and my imagination."

In her Conte d’hiver (Winter tale) series, Catherine Henriette chose Songhua River in the northeast of China, an immense blank page or backdrop for her attempt to capture life in the Chinese north. Struggling with the freezing cold weather of the north, Catherine Henriette waited for the children to leave for school and workers set-off for work, travelling from one place to another lingered with her hazy and tired body. She trailed the fishermen between ice holes crisscrossing the river. Catherine Henriette revisited the beaches of northern China to photograph the Conte d’été (Summer tale) series. With her keen observation on the pleasant beach bathers and the seaside once she was familiar with, Catherine Henriette has captured the seemingly eternally good-nature of the atmosphere, as if time has been frozen in a wonderful long vacation.


After a brilliant career as press photographer, she now focuses on her artistic creation. Catherine won the Prix de l’Académie des beaux-Arts, Paris, 2015 for Conte d’Hiver, Conte d’Eté and exhibited this work all around Europe.

Exhibition Walkthrough

A quick view of the exhibition as presented in La Galerie.