Talent, creativity, and audacity run in the veins of Jade Jagger, daughter of the mythical ‘70s power couple Bianca and Mick Jagger. Jade quickly became a superstar herself after her studies and career success in the art field. She founded Jade Inc. in 1996, adding remarkable jewellery designer to her growing resume of talents. She loves to take on challenges, partaking in interior design, clothing design, and artistic direction for a variety of projects around the world, including India, one of the countries that most inspires her. Now, she is reinventing herself one more time with her newfound passion for photography.
By Stéphane Le Duc
When did you realize you had a creative side? I was knocking on my mother’s womb… I could hear Andy Warhol, just beyond, saying, “Jade do come out – I need some assistance,” (laughs).
Is Andy Warhol somebody you admired? It’s seems almost a cliché to say yes, but he was definetly a great artist. That whole scene was definetly cooking up my juices for the creative world. There was such openess at that time about what art could be. You have to remember, it was a change when modern art became loud. We were already modernizing ourselves, but Andy emphasized that. I think I saw that, even as a young kid at five or six.
How did you come up with the idea of making jewels? I started out in sculpture and painting, and I was doing a lot of decorative arts, gold leafing, grounding pigments, and so on. Then, I just felt that maybe along my fish slicing friend like Damien Hirst, that I did not quite fit in. I looked around for different mediums and something that fulfilled the things that I loved, like my love of colour, my love of sculpture, my love of decoration, and then I chose jewellery. Fifteen to twenty years later, I don’t know if I feel so keen about it anymore. Maybe because of the things I loved about it, like its uniqueness, is starting to become much more mass-marketed or mass-produced, or maybe I just don’t like the competition.
There is a raw side in the way you design your jewels. Yes, it’s meant to be a little bit rough. I buy the stones in the rocks. Sometimes, I dont know what’s inside. It’s like gambling. I buy the rubies, the sapphires, the emeralds, and I find the gems inside it. I like to carve it with the craftsmen and feel the stone. It’s not about perfection – it’s about some imperfection, some lusters, some patina, and some life: the life of the stone, the life it had before you owned it.
“ – IT’S ABOUT SOME imperfection, SOME LUSTERS, some PATINA, AND SOME LIFE: THE LIFE OF THE stone, THE LIFE IT HAD BEFORE YOU OWNED IT.”
Your new interest in photography happened by coincidence? Yes. I was invited by Jean-Baptiste Pauchard of Studio57 Gallery in Paris to do a photography exhibition, and I foolishly said yes, of course! And [I] said, “In six or eight weeks, I can produce [for] you a huge exhibition,” and then I went home and said, “Shit…Why did I say yes?” Slowly, I got my head around [it], and I knew I was capable of doing it, and it was a good challenge. I think all artists like to be a little bit up against something because even when you are producing your own collection and it’s your own company, you need the challenge.
You take pictures of your friends? Yes – famous or not: like my brother James, my sister Georgia May, or Noel Gallagher (from Oasis) just putting on his straight face, and some invisible people who just wanted to take their clothes off… I was lucky to find that place in my house that just had this amazing light and just did the work for me in a way. They were all very intimite and very personal. We are friends, so we had to get into it. It was a very interesting, kind of very personal road – very emotional. I did not want to do fashion photography; I wanted to do art photography.
Do you think you enjoyed the process of photography enough to keep doing it? Yes, definitely. I enjoyed it very much because there are so many people I have met or that I’d like to take the pictures of. I really like to go deep into people. I am quite intense into people’s character, and to find that little moment when you giggle or you bring out the emotion is quite exciting.
Life is a circle, so do you think you might go back after that project to painting and sculpture? Yes, I think it’s time for me to take that back. I won’t stop jewellery, but creating art will be part of my life.