Watch Grace Jones talk about Madonna copying her style in an old interview

The arbiter of cool has some advice for budding creatives thinking about taking inspiration from other people

Grace Jones is an icon, an arbiter of style, and ultimately one of the coolest people of, perhaps, all time? It comes as no surprise, then, that countless people have looked to her for inspiration time and time again, referencing everything from her legendary music videos and her fashion editorials, to her inimitable personal style when it comes to their own work – but while you may have thought you’d gotten away with pinning a pic of her circa 1984 to your own moodboard, just know that she sees you, and she has something to say. 

Talking about those who have looked to her style in this interview, Jones says there is a difference between searching for inspiration and copying, before giving Madonna and her team their own personal shout-out. 

“You know Madonna used to come around and watch me,” she explains. “I know because kids would always say, ‘You know who was there? Madonna was there”, before offering some advice for budding creatives tempted to look to others before them. “If I was having a class of upcoming artists I would simply say, whatever it is you feel to do, do it before you go looking outside of yourself. From there you can get a true creation.” Amen.

Of course, this isn’t the only time the singer has spoken about people copying her. In her 2015 memoir, which FYI is entitled  I'll Never Write My Memoirs, Jones called out Rihanna, Lady Gaga, and Madonna, again(!). “Trends come along and people say ‘Follow that trend’”, she wrote. “There’s a lot of that around at the moment: ‘Be like Sasha Fierce. Be like Miley Cyrus. Be like Rihanna. Be like Lady Gaga. Be like Rita Ora and Sia. Be like Madonna.’ I cannot be like them – except to the extent that they are already being like me.”

Watch the full video above and take a look back at Jones’ shoot with Chris Cunningham from our November 2008 issue below.