BEN HEINE (born June 12, 1983 in Abidjan, Ivory coast) is a Belgian multidisciplinary visual artist. He is best known for his original series “Pencil Vs Camera”, “Digital Circlism” and “Flesh and Acrylic”.
In 1994, he discovered for the first time that his energy, his fears, his emotions and his ideals could be canalized in “visual projects”, it was the very beginning of a never ending adventure in drawing and painting. As a teenager, Ben had many other hobbies and activities: beside writing poetry on a daily basis, he played drums, piano and guitar, he also used to play basketball and to run everyday. His interest for graphic arts was eventually the strongest one.
Following his studies, Ben has tried all kinds of different jobs but visual creation has always been his main concern. Since 2006 until now, his pictorial works have been published in famous Belgian and international newspapers and magazines (see “Press” for more info) and they have been seen by millions of people online. Ben Heine’s artworks have been exhibited in Belgium, Great Britain, France, Canada, USA, Germany, Turkey, Romania, Brazil, South Korea and Spain. Ben is currently represented by several well-established art galleries in Belgium and abroad, such as the Gallery Garden (Brussels), the Appart Gallery (Brussels), Start/Stuff&Art (Cape Verde), the Art Movement (London), the Next Gallery (Jacksonville), the Radeski Gallery (Liège) and others (see “Partners” for more info). He has also participated in numerous art events such as the London Art Fair, the Affordable Art Fair, the Berliner List, the Accessible Art Fair, Art Event, Music for Life… (see “Exhibitions” for more detailed info about the most important past and future shows).
Mix of Ben’s recent art projects and photos you can see here below. Don’t miss the 2014 Pencil Vs Camera Calendar.
“Pencil Vs Camera” mixes drawing and photography, imagination and reality. It’s a new visual concept invented and initiated by Ben Heine in 2010. It’s full of magic, illusion, poetry and surrealism. Ben published his first “Pencil Vs Camera” image in April 2010 but the series is the result of a long graphic exploration and a logic consequence of his personal artistic development. Ben usually integrates an inventive hand made drawing in front of a realistic background. There are several methods to achieve the same effect (see “Interviews” for more info). Ben’s hand is always clearly visible; it represents the close connection between the viewer, the artist and the artwork. The drawing is either in black and white on white paper or in color on black paper, while the photo is often very colorful, this amplifies the contrast between the two mediums. In this series, Ben likes to focus on people’s life, portraits, nature, animals, architecture… Among others, the main themes approached in “Pencil Vs Camera” are: Love, Freedom, After Life, Friendship and Nature. Ben says: “I just make art for people. I want them to dream and forget their daily troubles. I used to write poems many years ago, I want to convey a poetic and philosophical meaning into my pictures, each new creation should tell a story and generate an intense emotion, like a poem, like a melody”. Because of their originality and the visual innovations Ben brought in his artworks, this series has had a huge impact on the graphic design community and has generated several buzz on the Internet. Ben says the initial idea of this “Pencil Vs Camera” concept came by coincidence while he was writing a letter in his family house in Braives, Belgium.