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d i r k   h o o p e r 


3rd PLACE WINNER:  Erogenous Zones Competition
dirk hooper
oklahoma city, OK/usa 
$400, limited edition (1 of 10) giclee print

artist statement

My work has evolved over the years to encompass the use of various media including, pen and ink, charcoal, graphite, acrylics, printmaking and digital design. The tool that has focused my passion, and that I'm best known for, is the camera. During the past decade I have built a large body of work through photography that is not only reflective of my other work, but very much related.
The common influences of all my artwork are just as varied as the tools I use.  Visually and stylistically I look to the genres of film, comic books, fashion, music videos and Japanese animation to gain inspiration.  Thematically, I draw from my influences, but also choose to explore the Gothic and BDSM subcultures and the realms of fantasy and the paranormal.
Photography allows me to collaborate with my subject in a way that's not possible in other media.   I encourage my subjects to explore a fantasy persona, or a heightened spirit that usually only surfaces in private moments or perhaps on Halloween.  This fantasy exploration can manifest as something powerful, or erotic, or vulnerable, or a myriad of other facets which are typically hidden from the public.  Because my work is fantasy, the subject is free to be something they would never share otherwise.  In that regard, my work represents truth through illusion. 
Often, the tone of my art can be dark or sexual, so it's not meant to be enjoyed by everyone.  However, it isn't my goal to be offensive.  I choose to limit my audience rather than compromise my vision.  This puts me squarely within a highly select group of artists who must fight to have their work recognized by mainstream fine art, and I wouldn't have it any other way.
I strive for a high level of craft in my artwork, despite the fact that many in the modern art establishment deride work if it is too representative or too refined.  Some may call this style of work "lowbrow" or "pop art".  Since I believe that the most compelling and challenging art is being created under this banner, I am pleased to be included in this movement.
I'm not interested in capturing reality at all.  I want to showcase my own dreams or those of my subjects.  My work is meant to be seen as an escape from the mundane.  There is typically a narrative in my work.  If one of my pieces takes you to another place, or if you just enjoy its aesthetic qualities, then I consider my work a success.


    Dirk Hooper is a renowned fetish and fantasy photographer, fine artist, graphic designer and writer whose work has been described as "forbidden tales to rival the likes of H.P. Lovecraft and the Marquis de Sade."  Dirk's publishing credits include such diverse media as comic books, music CDs, art books and slick fetish magazines.  He has also cultivated a reputation as a fine artist in established venues like the prestigious Fred Jones Jr. Art Museum and as an underground visionary in galleries like the Electric Chair, "the Dirty Show" in Detroit, "Fetish Project" in Brussels, Belgium and "Siberia" in Utrecht, the Netherlands.  Dirk has work in the permanent collection of the Kinsey Institute based at Indiana University.