Inspired by nature / Bored with convention / Determined to make a difference
In 2003– at the height of the digital camera revolution — Benjamin left home with a film camera determined to create a groundbreaking body of photographic art. As a completely self-taught photographer with limited funds, the following 18 months became his proving ground. He traveled more than 30,000 miles on a shoestring budget, spent less than five nights in a hotel room, and rationed his food to save money for film
Benjamin built upon his critical acclaim and in 2010 opened his first signature gallery in his hometown of Bristol, TN/VA. Four years later, two more of his pieces were exhibited at the Smithsonian, and four more new pieces were selected as finalists at the Natural History Museum of London.
In 2015, Benjamin founded WALLSabout Luxury Travel — an ambitious start-up designed to take his growing collector base to experience nature in style while funding key ecotourism initiatives. Barely a year later, in 2016, Benjamin’s work was selected for a large-scale solo exhibit at the Tennessee State Museum. The expansive 6000-ft² exhibit inspired the creation of his coffee table book, BEYOND, which was published in 2017 and features a foreword by Dolly Parton.
By 2019, Benjamin had decided it was time to expand beyond the borders of Bristol, and opened his second signature gallery location in Asheville, NC. This location features the addition of WALLS Wine Bar which offers sustainable and organic wines to compliment the overall WALLS experience.
Today, Benjamin’s artistic vision and ambitious conservation agenda continue to be fueled ever higher by his expanding collector base, exceptional team, and entrepreneurial spirit. When asked what lies ahead, he would say “hold on to your hat, we are just getting started.”
Benjamin’s ability to connect people to the natural world through art and travel has raised over $500,000 for non-profits and charities. He continually strives to expand the outreach of his mission, and as such currently serves on the Development Committee for the Jane Goodall Institute, a global community conservation organization.
Benjamin and the Benjamin Walls Gallery are intimately connected to the conservation efforts of the Northern White Rhinos. Only two rhinos remain of the entire species, Najin & Fatu, daughters of the last male, Sudan, who passed away of natural causes in 2018. A first-of-its-kind embryo creation and in vitro fertilization effort is now being conducted in an attempt to conserve the species (more info here). Benjamin is close friends with James & JoJo, caretakers of Najin & Fatu at Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya, and is an executive producer of the documentary film Kifaru that follows their lives and the plight of saving the species. Through WALLSabout™ Luxury Travel, the Benjamin Walls Gallery personally connects travelers with this initiative by including Ol Pejeta in its itineraries, therefore raising awareness and garnering funds for the conservancy.
The Benjamin Walls Gallery donates a portion of all sales of Benjamin’s book Beyond each month to Friends of the Smokies, a non-profit that raises funds for historic preservation, wildlife management, environmental education and more in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Benjamin took a condemned building and transformed it into one of the most awarded historic properties in Bristol.
“I believe that profitability and historic preservation are not mutually exclusive. In fact, historic preservation conserves resources, reduces waste, and saves money by repairing and reusing.”
United States Senator
I'm convinced that this young artist, who has already won many national and international awards, is truly an artist to watch.
Visiting the Gallery is truly an unforgettable experience. It is amazing to view the grandeur and mystery of what Benjamin's creative eye can capture through a camera's lens.There was no question as to why he has won so many national and international awards once I saw his work.
Your images are absolutely spectacular, as well as inspiring. I hope to see more of you and your great works!
I have never seen anything like it. A delightful time at the opening of two new pieces last Saturday. Everyone was welcoming and truly glad we were there.
73rd Governor of Virginia
What beautiful work you have on display in Bristol. I enjoyed meeting and visiting with you.
This gallery is an unpresumptuous gem which will take you around the world with Benjamin's incredible work. He is a brilliant artist!