Hess is renowned for his fascination with reinventing the depiction of the body through the veil of technological advancement. This fascination took shape in his research series named Liquified. The material research emerged partly after a desire to use the Liquify filter in Photoshop, where the body appears to melt into a physical reality.
Hess developed a wide range of slime-like substances, varying in color and thickness. The materials were draped on a model creating semitransparent blobs and draperies that blur the line between material and skin. Hess captured his new, liquid body in a series of images and performances which got noticed by photographer Nick Knight who shot the material for the album cover of Lady Gaga’s Born This Way.
“The shoot was a performance on it's own where I draped the slime over a hat Lady Gaga was wearing. The beautiful thing about it was that each image was a just a fraction of a second because the material was constantly evolving. It was truly magical when someone on set put a van on to create movement in her hair, instead a giant slime bubble appeared from her armpit. Both the dynamic materials and way of working made the project so exciting for me. “