Laurène Southe

Laurène is a creative writer and freelance photographer based in Vienna, Austria of Congolese descent. As early as the age of three, she moved back and forth to her neighbouring country of Switzerland, attending several prestigious boarding schools on the borders of France for almost a decade. During her residence, Laurène was mainly taught in French, English and German and therefore, speaks and writes in all three languages fluently. In 2011, Laurène relocated to South East London where she received most of her secondary education. Whilst a middle school student, she also attended the Anna Fiorentini Theatre and Film School, building there a strong passion for writing.

In her free time, the little starlet could be found jamming with her school’s jazz band and practising for countless hours and eventually passing her grades for the Associated Board of The Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM). After returning back to her hometown of Vienna, Laurène faced many obstacles and became reluctant to the point she no longer felt like she had a voice of her own.

This resulted in her exploring new avenues such as fashion photography and becoming the first Austrian member to join the Black Women Photographers, a global community supported by top companies such as The New York Times, Nike, Nikon and more. Moreover, alongside her photography ventures, she also became the youngest member of the Vienna African Writers Club organised by the University of Vienna.

In the beginning of the year 2020, Laurène decided to take matters into her own hands and began showcasing her various talents publicly.

Now her main known practises are poetry, songwriting, essays and articles for several acclaimed publications across the world. As of late, Laurène took part in the ‘An der schönen blauen Donau’ group exhibition in 2021, she performed at the first African Diaspora Festival held in Austria in 2022 and during Vienna Design Week, Laurène was included in the ‘A Home is Not a Home’ group exhibition curated by Tonica Hunter. Recently, she attended a writer residency at Echo Correspondence to complete her first poetry collection titled ‘Child Of Congo’ expected to release in 2024.

For the coming year, Laurène is expected to exhibit in Montreal for a collaborative project with fashion brand L’Art Suffit.

No matter the challenge and how many years it takes to put her point across, Laurène is no stranger to self-discovery and takes every opportunity she gets to express herself and leave a mark on the world.

Articles by Laurène Southe

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