I have long been obsessed with the steamy romance novels and films of the late Jackie Collins, but my fascination with her work culminated when Baroness Magazine (London) commissioned me to create an art piece about art, fashion, and sex. The final product, entitled Angel, was a sort of multimedia fanfiction tribute to Collins. I wrote an excerpt of a fictional unfinished Collins-esque novel, created a short video, and staged a series of photographic film stills to provide an accompanying visual narrative. The project was published in 2016.
Yet it was about 2004 when my Jackie Collins obsession began. I couldn’t get enough of the brightly-coloured paperbacks that contained the most multifaceted Hollywood soap opera dramas that I could ever imagine. After making Jackie Collins tributes for over a decade, it was through this Baroness commission that I truly reached the pinnacle of my artistic exploration into all things Jackie Collins (so far!). To dive further into my Jackie Collins obsession visit my art website.
Here I am- as Jackie Collins- photographed in my home by Federico Radaelli, with hair and make-up by Hollywood prosthetic artist, Denise Kum, while ensconced in my own DIY Gucci couture and furnishings.
When Baroness Magazine founder Matthew Holroyd (who was also a great artistic collaborator on this project) invited me to create a photographic story, I envisioned erotic scenes featuring characters inspired by a Jackie Collins novel intersecting with the glamor of fashion photography. I saw the open hardcover book and roaring fire in my mind’s eye, and I set to work on writing an excerpt for the fictional Jackie Collins novel, Angel. All I needed was enough to drive my visuals...enough to fill the two typed pages for the still life of the open book. Enough to get my actors (including Frankee Park and Oliver Smiles) in the mood.
Angel, set in the 1980s, is about an extremely successful female commercial photographer who shoots celebrities and models and has also gained recognition in the art market—every photographer’s dream! Specialising in the male nude, she does whatever it takes to get the best shots. Angel needs her subjects to be turned on. The twist is that she is a sex fiend, turning the tables on the stereotypical male fashion photographers of the 80s and even to today. My saucy excerpt, which I first penned in sharpie marker because that’s how Jackie Collins wrote all of her books, takes place at a test shoot where the male model is trying hard to impress Angel because he wants the job. He will also do whatever it takes to get the best shot...
Jackie Collins’ novels were not rated PG. Collins was writing about female orgasms since the 1960s, which was highly unusual for her era. It still is. Baroness Magazine is an erotic journal about sex, art, and fashion. It’s unisex smut packaged in a sophisticated and tasteful way. So while there is actually no real X-rated nudity or sex in Angel, in honour of Jackie Collins and respect to the ethos of Baroness Magazine, I took the liberty of writing an erotic text.
Did I mention how much fun we had on this shoot? Oh my! My heartfelt thanks to all involved, and my deepest appreciation to Jackie Collins for countless inspiration in my art practice. Below is a video I made from the VHS footage I shot during the Angel photo shoot. This video was screened at Baron Magazine's first annual Paradiso Cinema screening in 2016.
And...lucky me...I am pleased to announce that I have another forthcoming collaboration with Baron Magazine. Click here to learn more about The Valentine Cocktail & Perfume Club event on February 13, 2019 at The London EDITION. I hope you can join us for an evening of aphrodisiacs. I've paired sexy perfumes with sexy cocktails and I can't wait to get you in the mood for Valentine’s Day!
About Baron and Baroness Magazine
Baron and Baroness the erotic journals for gentlemen and ladies who enjoy a cocktail, chit chatting about modern art, fine dressing and when the lights fade become connoisseurs at taking their companion to bed. Baron and Baroness are at the core of human desire and are available in all good stores worldwide, including Dover Street Market, London, Colette Paris and Opening Ceremony, New York.