Image has always been an integral part of Grace Jones’ music career, her visual identity being almost as important as her voice. The artwork for her latest album, Hurricane, designed and art directed by Tom Hingston Studio, knowingly works the conceit of the popstar as visual commodity: in this case featuring life-size versions of Jones made out of chocolate. Here’s how they did it…
Photographed by Jonathan De Villiers, the cover for Hurricane features a production line of chocolate Grace Jones heads with supporting imagery showing Jones inspecting a range of body parts at various stages of the manufacturing process.
“The original idea was to produce a set of images of Grace being mass-produced but with her being in control of the actual process,” says Hingston. “The crux of the idea is that she has ownership of her identity. We looked at a range of manufacturing processes, from car makers to pottery factories, but there was something about her being made of chocolate that had [the right] connotations.”
Whilst scouting the Thorntons factory in Derbyshire as a potential location for a shoot, the chocolatiers suggested making up the moulds for each of the body parts (16 in all) and creating them there in the factory.
“It takes about 20 minutes for each mould to set,” says Hingston of the casting process, “and for the head there are just two small holes for the nostrils. But Grace was up for it and her participation was key to the idea. Of course, we were working with someone who’s used to being the muse or subject of such an unusual process.”
Indeed, this is a woman who was the face of La Beauté Sauvage, the surrealist ad for the Citroën CX in the 1980s. Being made into chocolate no doubt seems like a walk in the park.
Design and art direction: Tom Hingston Studio
Client: Wall of Sound
More at hingston.net