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Artist of The Week: Jordan Sannicks

At the ripe young age of just 20 years old, visual artist and up-and-coming model Jordan Sannicks (who goes by simply his surname) is set to take the creative world by storm. Just last week, after making his runway debut in Milan walking for iconic Italian fashion house Prada, there’s no doubt that Sannicks has cemented his status as a certified juggernaut rookie. We took some time to sit down and speak with Sannicks about his exciting, new creative outlets as he steps into fashion’s spotlight, and his hopes for 2018 to be a renaissance year full of artistic exploration as he grows on social media.

While it’s not often that models can look back on their careers and reminisce on their catwalk debut for a huge brand like Prada, Sannicks is one of the lucky few who can. Surreal doesn’t even begin to cover it.

“Man, I feel accomplished,” he says. ‘I think I’m still processing it happening, like what? I really just walked PRADA?!”

After focusing solely on creating visual art for so long, Sannicks believes that his background experience as an artist helped shape his natural jump into modeling.

“When you are an artistic person, obviously you like nice shapes. So, I can look at photos of myself and see when I made a nice shape with my body, and can recreate that in future work as opposed to me having to wait for someone else to tell me that it looked good. Don’t get me wrong though, sometimes clients think my posing is a little to weird [Laughs].”

Sannicks’ unique upbringing with mom and YouTube makeup star, Kandee Johnson, also helped to shape him into the inspired creative that he is today.

“My mother was inspiring for sure, she made something of herself by BEING herself. That was inspiring and encouraging. I guess that all means it influenced me.”

But by the same token, Sannicks is clear that he’s always on a mission to carve out his own path.

“Everything I’ve been interested in has been because of me just being interested in it. I don’t do makeup, so I don’t particularly follow up on my mom’s career like that. And to be honest I’ve always tried to like keep it a secret that I was her son… I don’t like people being interested in me for anything but ME.”

Sannicks’ distinctively simplistic and colorful style plays upon a mix between high end and casual wear.

“[My style] is like a pack of starburst mixed with streetwear. I kinda wear a lot of different things so it’s hard to sum it all up.” Some brands he likes to rock: “I’d say Rick Owens and Y-3. Oh, and Acne Studios. I love Acne. They got lots of nice colors, which I like a lot. But lots of my wardrobe is thrift and all that too.”

When it comes to describing his artwork, Sannicks prefers to speak conceptually.

“Most of it is a combination of realism and pop art. It’s more creative than it is actually like ‘impressive’ some might say. I like seeing shapes an stuff that I’ve never seen in the world. I try to balance abstract and realism.”

One of Sannicks favorite pieces that he’s ever done is “Child Cries to Mother,” which also happened to be his first-ever sale.

“It’s really simple. But I really love the shapes and colors in it.”

"Child Cries to Mother" by me

A post shared by sannicks (@jsannicks) on

Sannicks considers himself an observer, drawing much of his creative inspiration simply from the world around him.

“I see things throughout the day that I think are cool shapes. I slept like looking at things that are manmade and thinking how I would’ve made it, and then I’ll go draw that myself actually,” he says. “I look back at old drawings or paintings and when I do that, I guess my mind just starts recreating it with things I’ve made more recently. I don’t think that made any sense, but basically I start putting new things from new work, into old things from old work, to create new work.”

When asked about brands or potential dream collaborations, Sannicks emphasizes his admiration for Rick Owens.

“It’d be tight as hell to walk for him or anything, but honestly I’d want to create something with him one day. I think our minds, at least in the creative realm, think similarly. The shapes he likes and creates in his work are similar to lots of stuff I draw and like to see.”

Lastly, for 2018, Sannicks is looking forward to creating more work and utilizing social media to share it with the world.

“I want to start to produce way more work and posting on my Instagram more often so I can build a following of more creative people so I don’t get like 1/8 of the appreciation for my art posts as opposed to my post of just me,” he says. “I guess since there’s a whole year ahead of us, I’d say it’d be pretty cool to have my art up in a gallery or something like that. Actually not even just that, I really want to one day like have my art—not just stuff I put on canvas—in like a cool warehouse party. I think it’d be cool to like design a whole thing like that. So if I did that this year, that’d be tight, but I don’t know—maybe that will come later.”

If there’s anything to take away from our interview with Sannicks, it’s this: he’ll never be one to be shoved in a box and be labeled.

“All I need to accomplish right now is changing my ‘title’ from ‘model’ to ‘creative mind’ or something like that. I think artist is even too limiting—people see ‘artist’ and tend to think that all they have to offer is art on like canvas and stuff. The only time I’ll feel like someone is truly experiencing my art is when they can see, hear, and feel it.”

Photos via Dara Kobayashi Ritch.

Stay tuned to Milk for more creatives to follow. 

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