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dark queen of the catwalk, jamie bochert

Jamie Bochert by day, Frances Wolf by night, this dark and brooding beauty tells i-D about her strange life so far...

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With sweeping cheekbones, smoky eyes and a silky curtain of black hair, Jamie Bochert is slicker than your average doll-faced fashion-mannequin. She became the dark horse of modeling in the early noughties, debuting in Ann Demeulemeester’s autumn/winter 02 show and appearing on the cover of i-D’s The Graduate Issue, No. 232, September 2002 (back then she said the things most likely to keep her awake at night were “jet lag or phone sex”). She grew up in New Jersey, wanting to be a ballerina but fashion’s luck changed when she ended up waitressing in The City of Dreams (Los Angeles) and her sexy, sultry stare was discovered at the age of 22 and flown to New York. After taking a five year break to concentrate on her music as alter-ego, Frances Wolf, Jamie returned to modeling in 2008 having taught herself piano and guitar and played on stage with Patti Smith alongside husband Michael Pitt’s band Pagoda. But while Frances Wolf is making beautifully haunting, piano-driven music, Jamie is stalking the catwalks of Chanel, Marc Jacobs and Prada like the nonchalant queen of dark and brooding beauty that she is.

Where are you right now?

Tell us about the trip to Argentina and the day of the shoot
We shot this story in Patagonia. Patagonia is one of the most beautiful, magical places I've ever been to. 

What is the best location you have ever shot?

Where is your favourite place in the world?
Morocco, Patagonia, Italy.

How do you feel about comparisons between yourself and Patti Smith?
It's a great compliment. 

What was it like to perform with her?
It was like reading a great book and not wanting it to end.

How is the music going, are you going to release anything anytime soon?
I am finishing an album and hopefully releasing it in the next few months.

Tell us more about Frances Wolf, is she an alter ego?
My friend and I were sitting at a restaurant in Paris talking about what name I would use and that was the name we had at the end of the conversation. No alter ego, just a name I like.

Is music more important to you than modelling?
Music and modeling are different to me. Modeling (for me) is a collaboration between my personality with the ideas and creation of a designer, photographer or art director. It is very different from sitting at the piano or with a guitar writing a song alone. That's my experience.

How much do you follow fashion? 
I'm not good at following anything.

If you weren’t a model, do you think the fashion industry would still be something that interests you? 
I dont know.

Why did you decide to come back to modelling? 
I had a great opportunity, so I took it.

How had the industry changed since you left? 
The difference between then and now is social media. 

How does it feel to be labelled an ‘Industry Icon’?
Am I really?

What’s the best way to spend a Sunday afternoon?
The best Sunday afternoon for me would be to cook, play my piano, read, and hang out with my cat in my pyjamas. 

What do you think is the future of fashion and how it’s going to progress?
I don't know the future of fashion but I like that it has been integrated more with music, film and art.

Describe your life so far in 5 words?
Great, intense, unpredictable, strange, fun.