Ben Sklar

Ben Sklar

Ben Sklar


Ben Sklar (b. 1983, Baton Rouge, Louisiana) is a 4th generation artist primarily using lens-based work. He grew up in Austin, Texas where his family relocated to care for his elders in 1993. For good and bad, the artists of his family, William Forsyth, Constance Forsyth, Robert Selby and Charles Sklar, influence his perspective and practice. At 12, he began using disposable cameras to photograph summer boy scout trips, skating and friends performing for the camera. As a high school student, he did photography for the student newspaper and developed his interest in photojournalism going on to work for The Daily Texan newspaper at the University of Texas. At 20, he began working for The New York Times, shooting a fashion piece as his first commission. The following year he was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for breaking news photography after shooting iconic images of Hurricane Katrina in Bay St. Louis, Mississippi. Under the mentorship of Magnum photography Eli Reed, who he compares to a father figure, he learned the power of artistic voice and the greater meaning of living life with your camera, photographing the / your own human experience. After a brief training stint at the Associated Press San Francisco office, it became clear he did not fit into office culture and was more interested in developing his own ideas through his photographic practice. He continued to build a roster of editorial and commercial clients, while almost secretly working in the darkroom printing silver gelatin prints, shooting medium format film, and creative narrative zines and book mockups. In 2016, he left Austin for New York City where he now resides but continues to spend time out in the world photographing what he interests him – touring with his friend’s band, dissecting masculinity, or exploring the natural world in Texas, Vermont, and California. He is expanding his practice into hand-painting, bookmaking, gallery exhibitions, creative writing, apparel making, video motion filming, and mixed media work. He believes in living life in the frame, carries a camera every day, and loves to create poetry from the magic of the image. 



Ben Sklar 

Born  1983.  Baton Rouge, Louisiana 



2002, SF Austin High School, Austin, TX

2006, Bachelor of Journalism, University of Texas, Austin, TX 

2024, MFA Photography, University of Hartford (in progress)


Work History

2004 – Present, Freelance photographer

Clients include: AARP, Bloomberg, Businessweek, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Der Spiegel, Edelman, Elle, Elysium, ESPN, Esquire, Fortune, GQ, GREY, The Guardian, Weekend Magazine, Hearst Content Studio, INC., INK Global Publishing, L’Expres, Men’s Journal, M-Magazine, Du Monde, Modern Farmer, Mother Jones, Outdoor Voices, Outside, People, Politico, Popular Mechanics, Prevention, Real Simple, Runner’s World, The New York Times, T-Style Magazine, T Brand Studio, The Wall Street Journal, Vice, among others.


Exhibitions & Honors

2022, Solo, Sunshine Milkshake, Foltz Fine Art, Houston, TX 

2022, Nothing Left but Healing, group book and show, Pomegranate Press, Richmond, VA 

2019, EAST group show, Austin, TX

2018, Magenta Flash Forward 
2018, American Photography 34, Winner 
2017, American Photography 33, Winner 
2017, Bushwick Open Studios, New York City, NY
2015, Modern Rocks Gallery, Austin, TX, permanent collection
2015, Lower Left Gallery show, Austin, TX
2014, Feature Shoot, artist feature, May 2014
2013, American Photography 29, Chosen Winner
2012, Photo District News Annual
2011, F8 Magazine, artist feature
2010, Telling Their Stories, group show, Ogden Museum, New Orleans, LA 
2010, Covering Katrina exhibition, Newseum, Washington, D.C. 
2010, Feature Shoot, artist feature
2010, Zulu at 100 zine, Harry Ransom Center Collection, Austin, TX 
2010, Solo, Zulu at 100, The Darkroom, New Orleans, LA 
2010, Associated Press Photos of the Decade 2000-2009, Hurricane Katrina
2009, Salon hanging, "Zulu at 100," Coup d'Oeil, New Orleans, LA
2009, PX3 - Prix de la Photographie, honorable mention photo story & feature
2008, The Atlanta Photojournalism Seminar, third portrait, Atlanta, GA
2007, Hurricane Katrina Benefit, Tiru Gallery, Austin, TX
2006, Hearst Journalism Awards Program, third overall, best image, first news & sports
2006, Photographer of the Year International, honorable mention disaster photo, sports feature
2006, Sigma Delta Chi Award, Society of Professional Journalists, breaking news photography



Read More