In an industry known for self-aggrandizement and oversized egos, Jenny Friedberg might be the nicest and most modest person currently working in fashion. Her humble demeanor belies a sense of calm and confidence that seem almost transcendental in nature.
As the sole founder of Creative Chaos (a boutique media production, casting, event planning and creative consulting agency,) Jenny has spent the last 20 years working at the highest levels of the commercial fashion photography world and has collaborated with the world's most notable photographers, editors, and creative directors. Her agency produces consistently outstanding creative work for the fashion industry's most powerful clients.
For someone with such a calm demeanor, Jenny is a whirlwind of creative energy and activity. When she's not casting the next major campaign for H+M, this NYC native and mother of two kids is constantly thinking about ways to bring the creative community together and connect on a multitude of different levels. Her incredible 2,500 square-foot ground floor office space in Dumbo is a modern-day cultural salon, hosting artist exhibitions, curated dinners, film screenings, book signings and roundtable discussions.
Jenny truly embodies the spirit of cool, smart, interesting, talented and accomplished women that we love to feature on Ivory Row. We recently sat down with her to discuss life, love, passion, and happiness.
What is your favorite virtue?
Patience!....unfortunately, I don't have a ton of it since I'm a single mom and a business owner but I have a serious meditation practice and try to cultivate mindfulness in my daily routines so I'm working on that!
What are your favorite qualities in a man?
What are the seven virtues again?? hahaha. Those!! And, a wonderful sense of humor as well!
What is your idea of perfect happiness?
Sitting with my kids at our place upstate and hanging out with friends laughing and cooking!
Which living person do you most admire?
My mother Stevie Phillips! She is an amazing and fit NYC chic woman and at 78 years young she just published her first written work which is a memoir of her younger years as an agent to Judy Garland and Liza Minnelli.
What is your greatest regret?
That I could not make my marriage work....but, life goes on! In any case, I have no regrets in my life. It is an unfolding path and I am good with that.
What natural talent do you wish you had?
I wish I could sing better.....I'd belt it out at the top of my lungs if I could hold a tune at the same time....that would be fun.
What's the favorite gift you've ever received?
I love the Eva Fehren rose-gold X ring that my friend and rising-star designer Ryan Roche gave me. I wear it on the different fingers on my left hand...sometimes the middle finger, sometimes my thumb. It reminds me of commitment to deep friendships and hard work.
What piece of art would you buy if you had absolutely no budget?
I'm in love with the photography of Elger Esser that I first saw at the Venice biennial about four years ago. One day I'd love to have a giant print on my wall.
If you could invite three people to dinner, dead or alive, who would they be?
Richard Avedon, Helmut Newton, and Irving Penn.
What’s the best pieces of advice you’ve ever received?
To show up. To pause before reacting. And, to develop a point-of-view and stick to it.
"There is a river flowing now very fast. It is so great and swift that there are those who will be afraid. They will try to hold on to the shore. They will feel they are torn apart and will suffer greatly."
-- attributed to an unnamed Hopi elder
Tell is about the cause or charity that is closest to your heart
The Pema Chödrön Foundation.
What's your favorite way to wear cashmere?