Chris Benchetler // About
Pro freeskier legend, Chris Benchetler, grew up in the shadows of California’s eastern SierraNevada range. Skiing and art making evolved organically in concert with the natural world.“Mother Nature was and continues to be my best teacher,” Benchetler confided.
His backcountry skills and dynamic artistry secured major sponsors and screen time in skimovies including the groundbreakingAfterglow. In 2007, he founded Nimbus Independent, anartsy ski film company, along with fellow pro skiers Eric Pollard, Pep Fujas, and Andy Mahre.
Benchetler created topsheet graphics for Atomic’sBent Chetler, awildly-successful, promodel ski line. The company recently appointed him creative director of freeskiing. He hasalso created artwork for other major brands such as Smartwool and Dakine.
One of Benchetler’s most artful collaborations—a multi-brand, group of essentials designedfor the ultimate backcountry skiing experience, emblazoned with the emblem of the GratefulDead—inspired him to make a film. The result,Fire On The Mountain, is an award-winningfilm, narrated by Hall of Fame basketball player and self-professed Deadhead, Bill Walton.The film features Benchetler and action sports stars—his wife, pro snowboarder KimmyFasani, surfer Rob Machado, pro skier Michelle Parker, and pro snowboarders Jeremy Jonesand Danny Davis.
In 2022, he and Kimmy launched The Benchetler Fasani Foundation after her bout withbreast cancer. The BFF provides meaningful connections to the outdoors and the healingproperties found in nature to those who have suffered loss or hardship.
Though skiing is still very much a way that Benchetler expresses himself, he is relying heavilyon his artwork as a means of self-expression. His home studio in Mammoth evidences hiscommitment; paint covers the floor and bright splashes of color dot the walls. Benchetlerexplained, “Creating art is a process of discovery. I’m embracing my self-taught nature andthrowing paint at the canvas!"