Synonymous with a world of ingenuity, Alma Jodorowsky's family name is one of history and equivocal creativity. Born in Paris, into a family of artists, Alma has never called anywhere else home, but she has certainly ventured forth and established herself, as an actor, model, director and musician, beyond the winding streets of ‘la Ville Lumière’.
Jodorowsky's creative talent is unquantifiable. Whilst pursuing a career in acting and a career in music, her coquettish Parisian style couldn’t stay away from the fashion pages, either - but despite remaining close friends with notable names like Karl Lagerfeld, her main focus now is on her acting and musical endeavours. After pursuing an acting education in both Paris and New York, it is no wonder she is being recognised internationally, and is understandably very excited to be headed to Cannes for her involvement in Ilan Klipper’s film ‘Le ciel étoilé au dessus de ma tête’ for the ACID selection, which is a paradigm selection of independent filmmakers. Her red stained pillowy lips, and her doey brown eyes have now graced many a cinema screen, most notably, you may recognise her from ‘Blue is the Warmest Colour’ (Kechiche, 2013) and from her starring role, alongside Cara Delevigne, in ‘Kids in Love’ (Foggin, 2016). All the while, too, she has been creating music with her band ‘Burning Peacocks’.
‘Burning Peacocks’ were formed when Alma and her bandmate David Baudart, who she “just met through music” and mutual friends, decided to start creating music together in 2013, whereafter they recorded their first song “games” in David’s bedroom, which immediately interested their label Choke Industry, who produced their first EP at the end of 2014. The beginning of ‘Burning Peacocks’ was a start to something new for Alma, “I had several bands, none of them were serious, they were all just with friends, and I always used to write. When I was a kid I used to love to write, whether it was just stories or poems but then it became really serious with ‘Burning Peacocks’, it was my first proper band”.
Still writing, four years on, the duo released their first album ‘Love Reaction’ in October 2016. This week we are celebrating the summer release of ‘Ondulation’, and its adjoining music video brought to you exclusively by Semaine. Although, it isn’t necessarily a song preempting another album, just yet. Mentioning that ‘Ondulation’ is like “a summer gift” to their fans while they are still promoting their first album, “it was a way of making a new song for the people who follow us, and who follow our band”, she says. Nonetheless, the video is absolutely full to the brim with summer romance that makes us all giddy with excitement for the coming season. Currently there is no telling when they will be bringing out another album of French-Folk-Pop, but we have been assured there are certainly projects in the pipeline.
Set in Los Angeles, and directed by Alma, the vast city seemed like the perfect back drop for her story of two lovers in the ‘Ondulation’ music video. “Because of the journey of love, I wanted them to play this hide and seek game, and I thought that it was the perfect place to do a road trip and to run around in big and beautiful landscapes”.
Although the decoding of the song’s lyrics is an exclusive exercise only to the French speakers among us, its name ‘Ondulation’, which directly translates into ‘ripples’ in English, does reflect the meaning behind the writing. “It’s about love and how you can be really disappointed sometimes, and then the next second it will happen again, and how it moves inside the relationship and the ondulation of love which is always ambivalent, and always moving. That’s the beauty of it.” Moving from the city into the sparse desert, filled with dinosaur dreams, the two protagonists, who are friends of Alma’s in real life - Jazzy De Lisser of the critically acclaimed film ‘To get her’ (2011) and Sebastian De Souza who Alma starred along-side in Chris Foggin’s ‘Kids in Love’ (2016) - are seen interacting but only at the end reaching each other. “I wanted to do something with a couple chasing each other and playing hide and seek, something playful, but at the same time you never really know what’s going on, if they’re upset, or if they’re playing” and this ambiguity is not something exclusive to the ‘Ondulation’ music video, her other videos are just, if not more, conceptual.
This dive into directing is not Jodorowsky’s first. She’s so far directed many of the band’s music videos, which all fiercely portray scenes that are open for interpretation by the viewer. “It’s easy to make a music video from the music because they are my lyrics, I know what I want to show and the story that I want to tell. But when I write the music, I think about the writing of the music and not necessarily the image”. Intrigued by her creative process, and her ability to section off aspects of her creative brain to create something different from something that she has already created, her creative process is distinctly unique, and seemingly so easily multifaceted.
A quick exploration into the name Jodorowsky will tell you that Alma comes from a family of established directors, actors and singers which leads one to believe that it is not hard to understand why Alma has been so spoiled for choice in her creative undertakings. Although, she is adamant to distance herself from the idea that her upbringing has had any specific baring to her decisions of what to pursue “I’m not doing it because of my family, I was raised in an artistic environment, it is true that it was appealing and it made me want do it because of that, but it’s not just that. I would just like to express myself in different ways, and the different shapes of art, the way that you can express different feelings and abilities.”
Filled with a passion to create, and success spanning multiple creative industries “it’s always really hard to see the future” for Alma because her creative skillset and already established skills mean that she can truly achieve whatever she puts her mind to. But in her own words, “I think you have to be really focused on the present, and what you have, and just try to do the best you can do”.
By Kezia Navey for Semaine.