Photographer Ben Hopper presents ‘Naked Girls with Masks’

Words by Alix Fox

Ben Hopper is a mask-ermind! ‘Naked Girls with Masks’ is the latest project by this hotter-than-wasabi up-and-coming London-based fine art photographer, which features over ten different stunning, nude models wearing surprising, comical, and sometimes grotesque full-head masks.

You’ve heard of masked balls…but these shots are all about masked boobies! Yet in addition to being undeniably sexual, they’re also playful, disturbing, and thought-provoking: a parody of the way in which human beings usually present themselves, they beg the question – why do we reveal our faces, yet hide our bodies from view? And what happens when that arrangement is turned on its (masked) head?

The photographs just exhibited at ACT ART 8, a huge underground group art show, which took place in Angel, Islington on Friday 9th July (www.actart.co.uk)

The project is ongoing, and Ben is looking for journalists who want to report on his work, as well as gallery owners and fine art dealers interested in arranging further exhibitions with him.

The full story behind the photos, resources for reporters, and Ben’s contact info is all listed below.

BlackLotus

Miss Aniela

 

INFORMATION ON BEN

Ben Hopper is on a mission to create as many remarkable timeless images designed to overwhelm; his work has featured in magazines and exhibitions everywhere from Spain to Jordan, Switzerland, France, Germany and Italy. He lives in London, and originally hails from Israel, but has no desire for his projects to be weighed down with the heavy politics and negativity that’s sadly often associated with the region; instead, he wants to forge new, positive connotations by taking pictures filled with explosive movement, stylish humour, and intriguingly odd-yet-stunning scenarios.

Ben began his quest in 2007. After spending several years working for an Israeli trading company that specialised in importing photographic equipment, the restrictive, business-like nature of the job drove him to breaking point; desperate to unleash his creative spirit, Ben took advantage of the one perk his role afforded him by buying a camera at cost price, then jacked in his job and set off to Europe in search of freedom, adventure and pictures that packed a punch (and that’s punch with an illicit bottle of rum tipped into it). He quickly rose to prominence: images he captured of his brother and his friends – all circus performers in Madrid and around the world – were snapped up by publications all over Europe, while highly respected Australian mag Kurv published Ben’s photos in an exclusive Barbie-themed issue guest-edited by the iconic doll. Multiple exhibitions followed, including a showcase called Miniscule, in which the 200 pieces of art displayed were all smaller than a matchbox. He’s also worked with magazines and newspapers as diverse as Supersweet, Anglomania, and The Chap, in addition to contributing to several books.

“My photographic style is always evolving – I never want to take predictable, jaded pictures – but I particularly love the challenge of working solely with available light, and capturing bodies in motion”, says Ben. “I like every element of my compositions to fascinate; it might the energetic, quirky image of a nude woman in a moose head jumping into the air that first arrests the viewer, but then they notice interesting elements in the background too. I want everything about my photographs to provoke comment and exclamation. And I consider ‘What the fuck..?!’ to be a compliment!”

Ben is currently in-house photographer for two of the UK’s most notoriously trend-setting alternative clubs: The Last Days of Decadence and White Mischief.

 

MORE JUICE ON ‘Naked Girls with Masks’

From an article by Alix Fox in Bizarre magazine, www.Bizarremag.com

Naked Girls with Masks on Bizarre Magazine. Sept Issue 166 (out August 3rd-31st, 2010)

‘Just like Jim Carey’s character declares in the movie The Mask, these shots of scorching nekkid chicks in crazy headgear are “Smmmmmokin’!” They’re from a series of images called ‘Naked Girls with MasksNaked Girls with Masks’ (does what it says on the chuffin’ tin, dunnit), by London-based photographer Ben Hopper. “The whole project kicked off back in July of 2009, when I was snapping some pics of a stunning young lady called Cat Chappell and her girlfriend Diana,” explains Ben. “We were at my friend Alan’s house, and he happened to have loads of costumes and masks lying around. Cat’s back is covered in an amazing tattoo by Xed Le Head, who’s famous for inking hypnotic geometrical patterns, so I persuaded her to show if off my stripping to her birthday suit and sticking a mask on her head. I loved the effect; her perfect figure reminded me of the nude supermodels in Helmet Newton’s notorious black-and-white photos, and it was so unusual to see someone reveal their body yet hide their face, when usually it’s the other way round. I sought out other models mostly by using social networking sites, although Hana – who appears wearing both a grotesque scary rabbit head and a Venetian mask – bumped into me at a Torture Garden fetish party. She was wandering around topless with a mask on at the time, so she was made for the job!”

“The various masks came from all sorts of places. An octopus-shaped monstrosity borrowed from a performer named Tom Baker arrived still soaked with his sweat from a show the night before, and another mask was saturated with water: its owner had given it a bath to try and clean off the layers of grime and gunge acquired during an adventurous trip to Download festival that weekend! I got an artist called Skot Reynolds (aka Grave Industries) to transform an Ikea lampshade into a spooky skull headpiece by drawing on it, while Canadian mask-maker Douglas Witt grafted for hours to deliver three custom-made creations to me. I was quite obsessive about the need for masks to cover the models’ faces completely; I wanted to separate the girls’ bodies and brains entirely. This meant that a lot of the mask-crafters had to work at much bigger sizes than they were used to, which was a fun challenge for everyone!”

What’s next for Ben? “I’ve been working with a lot of unusual performers and contemporary circus artists lately, including contortionists and acrobats from world-famous Montreal group The 7 Fingers (Les 7 Doigts de la Main), who are like a renegade version of Cirque du Soleil. Every audience lucky enough to catch their shows inevitably absolutely raves about them – their routines are truly mind-blowing! I’m fixated on the idea of what could be achieved by creating high-end fashion editorials and glossy commercial advertisements with that kind of imagery; supple, sinuous, finely-honed bodies, clad in incredible outfits, and moving in amazing ways or forming surreal-looking shapes…that would look incredibly powerful. Combining all those intensely sense-stimulating factors would result in almost overwhelming pictures. I imagine people flicking disinterestedly through a magazine, then unexpectedly being gripped by the impact of one of my photographs, and it being impossible for them not to sit up and pay attention…and then impossible for them to forget what they’ve seen. I want to create fashion images that make people gasp.”

Ben’s also been focusing on a project involving beautiful women with armpit hair, featuring none other than singer (and fiancée of Neil Gaiman) Amanda Palmer. We’re more ‘Sure’ than a leading brand of underarm anti-perspirant that the resulting photographs will blow us away when they’re unmasked.

HUGE THANK YOU for all models, mask makers, Escapade.co.uk, ACT ART (Oliver & Marc), Alix Fox, Mad Alan and everybody else who helped me to make this happen. If I forgot to mention anyone, I’m sorry! I will probably come back to this post in the near future and update it with more details on the masks, models, locations etc. This project is getting richer by the day with amazing collaborations between beautiful women, amazing masks and kind people who appreciate my art. I am so grateful! Ben x

For print purchases / press inquiries please contact me directly on: therealbenhopper@gmail.com

36 Comments

Join the discussion and tell us your opinion.

adamreply
July 11, 2010 at 4:49 am

Love it!

I’m really fascinated by the way a mask changes peoples personalities too.. people will do stuff when their face is covered that they’d never do otherwise. Just in the process of making some masks for my work….

Keep up the good work man!

Ben Hopperreply
July 12, 2010 at 12:50 pm
– In reply to: adam

Thank you Adam! Appreciate it!
What kind of work do you do?
Ben

Tweets that mention PHOTOGRAPHER BEN HOPPER PRESENTS ‘NAKED GIRLS WITH MASKS’ « Benhopper’s Blog — Topsy.comreply
July 11, 2010 at 2:10 pm

[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Ben Hopper and Ben Hopper, Ben Hopper. Ben Hopper said: My first post on my blog! First online preview of NAKED GIRLS WITH MASKS. NO CENSORSHIP. FULL NUDE. WITH MASKS…. http://fb.me/CcyueZPb […]

Diane Holyoakreply
July 13, 2010 at 11:12 pm

Fab photos!

Ben Hopperreply
July 13, 2010 at 11:15 pm
– In reply to: Diane Holyoak

thank you! 🙂

PHOTOGRAPHER BEN HOPPER PRESENTS ‘NAKED GIRLS WITH MASKS’ (via Ben Hopper’s Blog) « vickytoria's diet planreply
July 14, 2010 at 3:12 pm

[…] Ben Hopper is a mask-ermind! ‘Naked Girls with Masks’ is the latest project by this hotter-than-wasabi up-and-coming London-based fine art photographer, which features over ten different stunning, nude models wearing surprising, comical, and sometimes grotesque full-head masks. You’ve heard of masked balls…but these shots are all about masked boobies! Yet in addition to being undeniably sexual, they’re also playful, disturbing, and thought-provok … Read More […]

PHOTOGRAPHER BEN HOPPER PRESENTS ‘NAKED GIRLS WITH MASKS’ (via Ben Hopper’s Blog) | Redvynal1's Blogreply
July 14, 2010 at 3:18 pm

[…] PHOTOGRAPHER BEN HOPPER PRESENTS ‘NAKED GIRLS WITH MASKS’ (via Ben Hopper’s Blog) Posted on July 14, 2010 by redvynal1 Ben Hopper is a mask-ermind! ‘Naked Girls with Masks’ is the latest project by this hotter-than-wasabi up-and-coming London-based fine art photographer, which features over ten different stunning, nude models wearing surprising, comical, and sometimes grotesque full-head masks. You’ve heard of masked balls…but these shots are all about masked boobies! Yet in addition to being undeniably sexual, they’re also playful, disturbing, and thought-provok … Read More […]

Jenniferreply
July 15, 2010 at 8:17 am

These are awesOme Ben, who made the masks for you??

Jen :0)

Ben Hopperreply
July 15, 2010 at 5:47 pm
– In reply to: Jennifer

Thank you Jennifer! I’ve just added some captions under the photos that has hand made masks or that are from Escapade.co.uk 😉
XX

Kat Lucidreply
July 15, 2010 at 6:16 pm

beautiful pictures. just wish there would have been a bit more variety with the subject matter/bodies. some even look emaciated, but it’s your vision and i applaud you for this work of art.

Ben Hopperreply
July 15, 2010 at 6:21 pm
– In reply to: Kat Lucid

Thank you! There will be more pictures / subjects / masks in the near future. This was a preview of the series …
But ye, I thought having a sort of thin natural / ‘helmut newton’ kind of girls will contribute to the whole feel.
thank you for kind words! 😀
x

Kat Lucidreply
July 15, 2010 at 6:38 pm
– In reply to: Ben Hopper

well if you are ever in need of a latina with tats and bit more voluptuousness hit me up on fb. heehee
looking forward to rest of the series!

Ben Hopperreply
July 15, 2010 at 7:30 pm
– In reply to: Kat Lucid

boo cant find u on fb.. whats yr profile? x

Kat Lucidreply
July 15, 2010 at 7:52 pm
– In reply to: Ben Hopper

we’re already connected 😉

http://www.facebook.com/lucidkat

girl on left. take a look at second profile pic for a better idea.

if in SF, hit me up!

Ben Hopperreply
July 15, 2010 at 8:05 pm

added u!

Kat Lucidreply
July 15, 2010 at 8:55 pm
– In reply to: Ben Hopper

we were connected through this account.
http://www.facebook.com/ben.hopper#!/THEREALBenHopper

is this also you?

Kat Lucidreply
July 15, 2010 at 8:57 pm
– In reply to: Kat Lucid

the entire link did not paste correctly. make sure you copy and paste

Ben Hopperreply
July 15, 2010 at 11:18 pm
– In reply to: Kat Lucid

I think it worked..?

Ben Hopperreply
July 15, 2010 at 11:17 pm
– In reply to: Kat Lucid

Yup 🙂 that’s my photography page

tonyreply
July 23, 2010 at 12:00 pm

Wow beautiful photos !!!!

Ben Hopperreply
July 25, 2010 at 2:28 pm
– In reply to: tony

ty tony!!

registry cleaner reviewsreply
July 25, 2010 at 5:38 am

great experience, dude! thanks for this great post wow… it’s very wonderful report.

Ben Hopperreply
July 25, 2010 at 2:28 pm
– In reply to: registry cleaner reviews

thnx!!

Night Vision Camerareply
August 5, 2010 at 2:34 pm

Hi Guy, this good blogs, thanks

Free Avatarsreply
August 10, 2010 at 4:49 pm

Wow this takes me back. Do you have a RSS feed?

Ben Hopperreply
August 11, 2010 at 12:46 am
– In reply to: Free Avatars

thank you! 🙂 hehe is that a good thing ye?
re RSS this blog will be moved to my website in the next couple of months.
meanwhile, best is to connect with http://www.facebook.com/THEREALBenHopper to stay updated (with a new website to come soon as well replacing current therealbenhopper.com)

lemme know if u don’t have fb
ben

PS actually added RSS now… 😉 x

Free Avatarsreply
August 10, 2010 at 5:24 pm

A topic close to my heart thanks. Where is your contact details though?

Ben Hopperreply
August 11, 2010 at 12:44 am
– In reply to: Free Avatars

sure! it’s on the post:

HOW TO CONTACT BEN

Ben is available for interviews and friendly chats, and has open ears for all ideas.

Phone: +44 (0) 75 336 333 80 (London, UK)

Email: info@THEREALBenHopper.com

Gmail: THEREALBenHopper@gmail.com

Twitter: http://twitter.com/BenHopper

Facebook: facebook.com/THEREALBenHopper

Website: http://THEREALBenHopper.com

Speed Dome Camerareply
August 12, 2010 at 3:26 pm

Hi Guy, this good blogs, thanks

JoundaOutratareply
August 16, 2010 at 4:27 am

Very Interesting!
Thank You!

Behind the scenes on Naked Girls with Masks in Brighton « Ben Hopper's Blogreply
August 24, 2010 at 2:44 am

[…] a comment » These pictures are from a day we spent in Brighton (UK) shooting for my series Naked Girls with Masks on a strange 21°C SUPER humid rainy day! We had 2 locations; Brighton’s beach & […]

Ben Hopperreply
October 1, 2010 at 4:43 pm

Thank you everybody!

hoggarreply
October 1, 2010 at 11:25 pm

you have nice ass

Behind the scenes on Naked Girls with Masks in Brighton « Ben Hopper's Blogreply
October 2, 2010 at 3:48 pm

[…] & pictures are from a day (August 22, 2010) we spent in Brighton (UK) shooting for my series Naked Girls with Masks on a strange 21°C SUPER humid rainy day! We had 2 locations; Brighton's beach & Devil's Dyke […]

Venetian Masksreply
April 11, 2013 at 3:58 am

This is something unique art!I love it!

OperArt [work 380] – Fotografia – “Naked Girls with Masks” di Ben Hopper (Inghilterra) | Barbara Piccireply
January 14, 2016 at 10:00 am

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