Gwen Lee


Gwen Lee is the co-founder and director of DECK Photography Art Centre and Singapore International Photography Festival (SIPF).

Her passion for photography led her to establish the SIPF in 2008, which has since become one of the longest-running photography festivals in Southeast Asia. From 2013 onwards, SIPF has received grant support from the National Arts Council to further develop public photography education in Singapore.

In 2014, Lee and her team built DECK, an arts center dedicated to photography, providing year-round programming for the community and residency programs for photographers. DECK received the Singapore President’s Design Award 2015 for its innovative architectural design and place-making with the arts. Since 2016, DECK has been a recipient of the NAC Major Company Grant as a dedicated space for photography arts in Singapore.

Lee has received numerous awards for her contributions to the arts community. In 2022, Lee was honored as a Chevalier, Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, conferred by the Ministry of Culture, France. In 2010, she received an arts award from the Japan Chamber of Commerce and Trade.

In 2013, she embarked on curatorial research in Germany supported by Goethe-Institut Singapore and the National Arts Council.

Lee has curated over 60 photography exhibitions in Singapore and overseas. Some highlighted exhibitions include Margins: Drawing Pictures of Home (2020) at the ArtScience Museum; Flux: Contemporary Photography from China (2014) at the ArtScience Museum; STEIDL DECK: 1001 Steidl Books (2016) at DECK; Daido Moriyama: Prints and Books from 1960s – 1980s (2016) in the 6th SIPF; Between Love and Death: Diary of Nobuyoshi Araki (2018) in the 7th SIPF; and The Natural History of an Island at Jimei x Arles International Photo Festival 2021, where she currently also serves as a committee member

She has been a jury member and portfolio reviewer on international platforms such as FOAM Paul Huf Award, New Cosmos Japan, FORMAT UK, KL PHOTO Award, KG+, DIPE China, Lensculture Awards, Houston Fotofestival, Daegul Photo Biennale, Rencontres d’Arles, and Ballarat International Foto Biennale. 

World Press Photo Involvement:
2024 World Press Photo Contest jury member

Gwen Lee on Social Media:
Instagram: @gwenleegimlay

Gwen Lee
Portrait credit: Isaiah Cheng