We stopped off at an abandoned building while walking around town discussing the projects he is involved in. H
e sat in the corner of Marley Café, head buried in a book, foot on his longboard with a teapot right in front of him. This was an artist in his natural habitat.
Upon meeting Jared Rudolph, 24-year-old fashion designer, fine artist, poet, musician and well, all-round creative, you instantly feel a sense of wanting to go out and achieve your dreams too. We finished a cup of tea while he told me about his greatest rebel moment. Almost getting arrested for stealing a Father Christmas doll from someone’s roof as a dare. “I mean it was their own fault for not taking that thing down in the middle of the year,” he says laughing.
We stopped off at an abandoned building while walking around town discussing the projects he is involved in. Jared was no stranger to this abandoned building. It turned out to be filled with inspirational graffiti done by none other but Jared. Sayings such as “Why do I have to work a 9-5 to stay alive?” or “Originality is on its deathbed” covered the walls. It made me want to grab a few spray cans and follow his lead while blasting “Fight the power” through my headphones. It is things like his wall art that inspires Jared’s clothing designs. Each piece is unique and a complete eff you to the society, he caters for the individual customer by making something that would relate to them. One of the t-shirts made is originally a “Supreme” t-shirt but changed to say “Supremacy” instead which is honestly such a good play on words. His an activist at heart and makes sure that it’s evident in everything he does.
Besides his clothing line, he has an NGO that gathers clothing, skating equipment and art materials for kids in underprivileged areas. Jared believes that everyone deserves a shot at following their dreams and doing things that make them happy. He named his NGO “i am” because he wants to connect everyone through arts. “Most kids won’t get the chance or opportunity to ever see art come alive and I want to bring that to them but also teach them to love, to respect and to live in unity. That is roughly what “i am” is about.” With an art brush in one hand and his longboard in the other, he’d honestly make the best saint ever.
After seeing nothing but gloomy faces at Uni all the time I was curious to know what made him choose this path instead of the academic nightmare. Turns out he was studying Sports Management which made him miserable, honestly that’s how I feel about sports too. He stopped studying and did retail job after retail job. His manager, however, caught him making clothes instead of working one too many times and made him choose between work and his art. “I’m not money hungry and I don’t like working for people who are” so like any good artist he chose his art.
“A lot of people has the illusion that dreams are what you follow but in actuality, it’s what you chase. And you have to want it so badly like there will be days when you’ll be knocked down and you’ll feel like you don’t want to do it anymore but it’s honestly worth it if it’s something that you genuinely love and something that you genuinely passionate about. You’ll find a way to make it happen and not care what anyone has to say. It sounds cheesy and cliché but it’s the honest truth.” – Jared Rudolph
Jared’s art has not only been exhibited on the walls of abandoned buildings but in galleries such as Honey Badger, The great Wizoo, Colorbox studios and the loft. His artwork being inspired by Jean-Michel Basquiat uses social commentary on the issues in our society and within ourselves. With its Neo-expressionist feel, it brings a message across while looking really cool. He hopes to take his knowledge in art and use it to educate children on how to create art as well. He gathers artists to help him on his mission. These artists give words of wisdom as well as teach the children art fundamentals.
What inspires such an inspiration you may ask well he says “my grandmother, children, rainy days and Rooibos tea with two sugars and just a little bit of milk.” Simple things that lead to him creating such amazing projects. Artist, musician, activist, designer or rebel? Jared ticks all these boxes and more.
Photographer and Director:
Model and Creative:
Esther Joy Cupido
Videographer and Visual Director:
Cinematographer and Editor:
Esther Joy Cupido
Smuckers – Tyler the Creator (2015)
Voiceover: Jared Rudolph
Sound and Editing: Seth Mothoa
Interviewer: Esther Joy Cupido