• Jemima Kirke. (Jessica Miglio/HBO)

    Artist First

    More Than Just a ‘Girl’

    Playing Jessa is both a blessing and a curse for Jemima Kirke. It helped the artist/actress win her latest exhibit in San Francisco, but she’d rather be seen as, first of all, an artist.

    Before the world came to know her as the actress who plays the wistful bohemian Jessa Johansson on the hit HBO series Girls, the 28-year-old London-born, Brooklyn-based Jemima Kirke was an artist. Kirke even earned a BFA in painting from one of the most prestigious art schools in the country, the Rhode Island School of Design, the alma mater of artists who include Jenny Holzer, Kara Walker, and the late Francesca Woodman. Her art career may have taken an unexpected detour due to her role on Girls, but a new exhibition proves that Kirke, who maintains that she’s an artist before an actress, is still on her way to making it. 

    Last Friday, San Francisco’s Fouladi Projects opened an exhibition of Kirke’s paintings entitled, “Platforms,” which runs through May 10. Kirke’s second solo show features oil portraits of women in her life. The exhibition almost didn’t happen; Kirke was initially hesitant when the women who run the gallery, Holly Fouladi and Hope Bryson, approached her about staging a show of her work after discovering her email address on her artist website.

    Permalink
  • Mark Schafer/HBO

    Hatewatch

    Is Marnie Really the Worst?

    People love to hate Marnie, Lena Dunham's practically perfect and perfectly despicable, best friend on HBO’s Girls. Could she possibly be that bad? (Maybe not. But also…maybe!)

    Isn’t Marnie the worst?

    Maybe you don’t agree. Maybe you couldn’t agree more that the impeccably groomed ingrate, with the looks of a young Brooke Shields and the personality of that girl from college you wanted push into oncoming traffic every time you saw her on campus (you know the one), is so diabolically awful that rage consumes you every time she speaks.

    Permalink
  • Executive producers Judd Apatow and Jenni Konner, and creator, executive producer and cast member Lena Dunham talk about HBO's "Girls" during the Winter 2014 TCA presentations in Pasadena, California, January 9, 2014. (Lucy Nicholson/Reuters)

    Moving On

    Hate Lena’s Body? Show Us Yours

    The star of 'Girls' was hit with another how-dare-you-show-your-normal-naked-body question this week. Anyone who still has naked questions for Dunham—ask them in the nude or keep them to yourself.

    Anyone who watches the TV show Girls has probably seen Lena Dunham’s naked body more than their closest friends’. But while her character, Hannah Horvath, has a penchant for doing unconventional things in the nude (like nibbling on a cupcake in the bathtub), she doesn’t really spend more time in the buff than any other average non-‘never nude.’

    The question isn’t, as one nosy reporter put it during a panel discussion at the 2014 Winter Television Critics Association, why Horvath is “often naked at random times for no reason.”

    Permalink
  • Lena Dunham, Jemima Kirke, Zosia Mamet and Allison Williams in Season 3 of HBO's "Girls." (Jessica Miglio)

    Hot Trailer

    The ‘Girls’ Are Back in Town

    Love ‘Girls’ or loathe ‘Girls,’ the HBO comedy’s new Season 3 trailer offers a lot to laugh at. And more to cringe at.

    A lot of people love Girls and cannot wait for the HBO comedy-drama-cringefestival to return for its third season. A lot of people loathe Girls and resent the fact that its portrayal of wayward twentysomethings as devised by 27-year-old Lena Dunham has been branded the voice of a generation. Some people don’t know what Girls is.

    All groups—love, hate, clueless—can, however, find things to be delighted by in the first trailer for the show’s new season. Girls exists in a strange pop-culture space, where incessant buzz meets incessant backlash, creating a discord that breeds that incessant conversation about the show and what it means to like, despise, appreciate, criticize, or, the big one, relate to it.

    Permalink
  • Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images

    Smooch

    ‘Girls’ Star Makes Out With Girl

    To promote a line of wedding dresses, Jemima Kirke and Pamela Love got intimate.

    It’s a plotline straight out of the HBO series that’s made her famous. Jemima Kirke, who plays the rambunctious and flighty Jessa in Girls, has reprised her wacky wedding from the Season 1 finale by donning risqué wedding dresses (one is made of lace—and only lace) and making out with jewelry designer Pamela Love. The photos promote Stone Fox Bride’s debut collection, whose website declares, “You're not into uptown. Or anything puffy or fluffy. Stiff flowers, pink cupcakes. F*** weddings.” The founder and designer, Molly Rosen Guy, calls Kirke a friend and explains that she is a married mother of two, “a painter turned actress who believes that, in her past life, she was a child prostitute and junkie.” It’s not the first provocative photo shoot for Kirke: in October, she posed nude for Vice at eight months pregnant. As Oscar Wilde might have asked, does life imitate Girls more than Girls imitates life?

    Permalink
  • (L-R) Allison Williams, Jenni Konner and Lena Dunham attend L.A. Loves Alex's Lemonade At Culver Studios at Culver Studios on September 29, 2012 in Culver City, California. (Stefanie Keenan/WireImage)

    Secret Weapon

    The Woman Behind ‘Girls’

    She’s Lena Dunham’s biggest fan. She’s Lena Dunham’s best friend. She’s Lena Dunham’s professional partner. Meet Jenni Konner, the other girl behind ‘Girls.’

    When Girls premiered last spring and devoured the zeitgeist, critics—heck, all of us—coronated creator-star-writer-director Lena Dunham as the voice of a generation. If that’s true, then Jenni Konner, the woman who brought Dunham’s talents to the attention of executive producer Judd Apatow and now acts as Girls’ showrunner, is that voice’s silent partner.

    She’s also, as Dunham said in January in her acceptance speech for the Golden Globe for best actress in a TV comedy, “my best friend and the person who I aspire to be.”

    Permalink