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Henrik Purienne

Photographer + Founder of Mirage Magazine

Sep 7, 2016

Henrik Purienne, Photographer + Founder of Mirage Magazine


As an internationally-renowned photographer and film director, South African-born Henrik Purienne became known for his female-centric photography and vintage aesthetic. Adding to that his role as the Editor-In-Chief and Founder of the international fashion and culture publication, Mirage Magazine, Purienne always has us wondering what he’ll do next.


An Interview: Get To Know Henrik Purienne

What is it about the female form that inspires you? 

Ultimate power. In alluring packaging.

How would you describe the overall theme of your images? 

“Women.” The variation is allegedly “A parallel universe of natural beauty and escapism.”

Your photographs are often times by the beach and pools–does shooting by the water inspire you? 

Yes water is the source of all life. Without it there is only sorrow.

When did you first start taking photographs? 

My aunt use to carry her little kodak point and shoot in her soft burgundy handbag where ever she went. I would sometimes “borrow” it to take some snaps of my friends when I was around 5 or 6. Yes, I believe that was some of my best work.

How is your creative process different when you do your personal work versus a national ad campaign? 

You mean…hanging out, having a good time with friends, and taking the odd snapshot when I see it all coming together naturally vs. having to stage a recreation of my reality with strangers in clown make-up pretending to have fun?

Why did you start Mirage Magazine

Word on the street was that ‘print was dead.’ So it seemed like a good time to get in on that action.

What inspired you to create a print publication?

In the year 2000 I briefly studied at a “multi-media school.” You know.

Do you think social media is helping or hindering the fashion and photography industries? 

Is the lowest denominator the new curator? Sure. But good is still good and bad is still bad. Or as the French say, “Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose.” I mean, take a baguette for example.

What makes you happy and upset about photography today? 

Luckily I do not get happy or upset. But let me just say this.. Digital photography is like cashew cheese. It has nothing to do with cheese.

What do you absolutely need with you at all times?

A nice stinky cheese and a baguette in my back pocket.

What are your 5 favorite records of all time? 

I’m not at liberty to say.

Ok, but what are you currently listening to?

Some birds outside my window.

What’s most important to you? 

Everything. And nothing. But nothing in between.


The Exclusive: Purienne.

Take an exclusive look into Henrik Purienne‘s next book, coming out Holiday 2016.


A Look Back: Purienne.

Images from Purienne’s iconic 2013 release, Purienne. feature his iconic style paired with unexpected details. Click through the images below to celebrate the pages book all over again.


Print Is Not Dead: Mirage Magazine


Henrik Purienne is not a fan of themes. He doesn’t care about current affairs, trends, or the latest ‘it’ celebrity. As a photographer, Purienne’s aesthetic hangs heavy with the scent of nostalgia; his images dripping with an effortless sex appeal that many attempt to emulate, but fall flat in mere imitation. As a publisher, Purienne’s eye for detail and penchant for style has created a unique view of the contemporary world that, together with business partner, Frank Rocholl, founded Mirage, a magazine featuring their own works, but mostly just everything they love.

Mirage’s latest release is an anthology titled Jamais Vu—including favorite works from the previous four issues of the elusive Mirage. It’s curated into one luxurious hardcover featuring imprinted rose gold text melting into a linen cover of innocent peach, encapsulating the finale of what Purienne calls the “end of act one.” Its pages are silky and thick; its old European print stock a canvas for hazy femmes and a pantone of fast cars. There’s no advertising and no seasonal fashion editorials featuring the latest runway styles. It’s a weighty journal of poetic musings, curious architecture and ethereal creatures. For Purienne, “print is not dead; the future of print is in art,” and so is reflected in Jamais Vu. Out July 20.