This series of photographs examines how society uses gaze to project emotion and how we interpret the looks of others. The research began after Morris-Cafiero noticed the facial expressions of a man standing behind her in the self-portrait she had set up in the middle of Times Square. Intrigued by the man and a similar photo that followed on the roll of film the photographer decided to set up her camera for the purpose of capturing the expressions of passersby. Each frame is chosen based on the strangers in the background, if they have a critical or questioning look, or if there is a gesture in their body language. By reversing the gaze back on the strangers, this Research begins a conversation about nonverbal interaction and the view society has on body image. This work has been exhibited in 5th Singapore International Photography Festival (2016), OBJECTIFS Centre for Photography and Film, Singapore (2018), The United Photo Industries Gallery Exhibition, New York, USA (2017), University of Dayton, Ohio, USA (2018) and featured in Vogue Italia (2018).
Original languageEnglish
PublisherThe Magenta Foundation
Number of pages144
ISBN (Print)1926856074
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • self-portraiture
  • Surveillance
  • photography

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'The Watchers'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Activities

    • 1 Invited talk

    Wait Watchers

    Haley Morris-Cafiero (Speaker)

    21 Feb 2018

    Activity: Talk or presentationInvited talk

    Cite this

    Morris-Cafiero, H. (2015). The Watchers. (1 ed.) The Magenta Foundation.