Henrik Purienne, The Hedonist Photographer

Womanhood hedonist, the photographer and filmmaker Henrik Purienne is a nakedness purist!

He has shot the most beautiful girls around the world, as Becca NovaKristi Vlok or Sonja Van Den Heever, wholly or nearly nude for his own pleasure and many brands, and also for Mirage Magazine he found.

We found interesting his neo-Playboy point of view, and when interviewing him, we realize that behind this “frivolous” image was hidding a man simply passionate by life’s beautiful things.

Read his interview below!

How did everything start?

Between making documentary films on the blind, I started shooting my girlfriends on holidays and hanging around the house. Which, in South Africa at least, often means half nude by the pool or on the beach…


Would you define your activity as a new kind of aphrodisiac photography?

Yeah it is like that time Lord Kingsbury candy flipped in the Tyger Valley parking lot and couldn’t feel his arms.

The first time a photographic inspiration began ringing in your head?

When I was a teen I used to walk the streets of Worcester, my hometown in South Africa… Portraits of wannabe satanists, lost dogs and plastic bags blowing in the wind, you know. I had a great teacher and a skeleton key to the art school darkroom…


Do you sometimes feels like the luckiest man on the planet or are you tired of watching tits all day long?

That question makes me feel like a tit.

Could you tell us more about your brand new book?

It’s a collection of snapshots and portraits taken between Cape Town, Los Angeles and the South of France over the past 3 years. Published by Prestel Verlag.


You’ve also raised Mirage Magazine, which philosophy is ruled as “fashion, swimwear and jet set hedonism”. How would you explain the “jetset hedonism” concept?

It refers to freedom of movement and choice.

Why the name “Mirage“?

Cause life (and fashion) is an illusion.


Could you confirm that the most beautiful women live in Paris?

Sure, the most beautiful women live in Paris. But they’re not from Paris.

Which music title would you advise for a night of love?

“The Sound of Silence” by Simon and Garfunkel.


Brad Elterman compared you to him during his Playboy Mansion years, what do you think about that? 

I think brad compared me to ‘ol hef? Either is fine by me.

Which importance do you grant to the clothes in the magazine’s shootings?

It’s pretty… pretty… pretty directional. Lame ‘creative’ styling is a big downer for us.


When you’re not at undressing girls, how do you like to dress yourself?

I like to drape myself in velvet.

According to you, which one of all the naked beauties you shot was the most charming?

Kitty, the cat my girlfriend stole from the neighbours in Cape Town. She knew just how to work the camera and had the most intense hungry eyes (turned out she was starving).


What are you currently working on?

The BECCA book. A bunch of personal images of my girlfriend. Also moving back into some film projects… I’m thinking Koi-San of the Kalahari.

Will you change of topic one day and choose to shoot, for example, cute kitten? 

I’m working on a ‘sunset’ serie. Shot in black and white.


Photos Credit: Henrik Purienne.