Livestreamers : Geishas of the Internet

In Asia, some hyper-connected young people earn money by making lonely fans believe in a potential friendship or love.
The best of them can make 500 000 euros a month…and even have their own private island…

The Livestreamers 2018 – © Jerome Gence / Cosmos

jerome gence

Kaoshiung, Taiwan. Lala, 35 years old, famous independent livestreamer. In addition to livestreaming sessions, Lala uses her popularity and image for partnerships with companies, brands, or associations. Here in a room of a love hotel in Kaoshiung. No need to have a computer to be a livestreamer. A smartphone is all you need. Some livestreamers decide to work independently and use their image as a product. But no matter the device, the job is the same : selling unattainable dreams to lonely fans. The Livestreamers 2018 – © Jérôme Gence / Cosmos

Habib, a 26-year-old Nigerien living in Guangzhou since 2012. In addition to French and English, Habib is fluent in Mandarin, saying: « If you want to succeed in China, you have to speak Mandarin. When I arrived my priority was to learn the language. » His job: buy goods locally from Chinese suppliers on behalf of African traders. After testing, negotiating, and buying the products, Habib and his colleagues pack them in cartons that can weigh up to 30 kilos each. The goods are then shipped by plane or boat to Africa. MaChine Afrique 2018 – © Jérôme Gence / Cosmos


MaChine Afrique : African Life in China

Every year, about 400,000 African nationals are passing through Guangzhou to do business there. About 16,000 live there. A tiny figure compared to its 12 million inhabitants yet sufficient in the eyes of some to give this third largest city in China the nickname « Chocolate City ».

Why did these Africans forget the West for China? How are they accepted? What is the price to pay?


Himalayas At Yann Arthus Bertrand Gallery

First photographs. They are about the life of the Himalayan people who I met along my way in remote places of Bhutan, Nepal or China. In 2016, I was invited by Yann Arthus Bertrand  to exhibit the photos in his gallery in Paris

Portrait of Aunshi enjoying a moment of rest in her house. On her knees one of her sons falls asleep. The days are very long for the women of the Himalayas. Their life alternates between working in the fields and taking care of their family.
Nepal, The Himalayas 2015 – © Jérôme Gence


Cosmos Photo Agency