little_queenies (little_queenies) wrote in vintagegroupies,

  • Mood:

Iggy the Eskimo

In the Swinging 1960s she was an iconic model who broke the heart of Pink Floyd`s Syd Barrett.
Known only as Iggy, she is thought to have lived in Thornton Heath and was regular at the Orchid Ballroom in Purley between 1963 and 1967. Then she vanished.

DJ Jeff Dexter, who regularly played at the Orchid, vividly remembers the beautiful girl who used to talk to him while he played his set. He first noticed her in 1963.
He said: "Iggy was part of a group of very wonderful looking south London girls. She was very mysterious, she was unusual because she did not look like anyone else at the time. Since she dissappeared, ahe has become a bit of an enigma".
Dexter says that he met the director and artist Anthony Stern in 1967 and that Iggy became involved with him at about the same time. Anthony took many pictures of the model.
Stern said: "Iggy was my muse. I met her at a Hendrix gig at the Speakeasy. She was a lovely inspiration and free spirit. I never knew her real name. We used to hang out together, occasionally dropping acid, staying up all night, going for walks at dawn in Battersea Park."

Photographer Mick Rock remembers turning up at Barrett`s to take photographs for his solo album cover "The Madcap Laughs", released on 1970. At an interview in 1999 he said: "Syd was still in his underpants when he opened the door. He`d totally forgotten about the session and fell about laughing. Iggy the Eskimo was naked in the kitchen making coffee. She didn`t mind either. They both laughed a lot and it was a magical session."
The most iconic images of her appear on the album, where she poses naked in the background.
Iggy remembers:  "Syd was so beautiful looking. We had a relationship, I lived with him for a while".

It was at that time she became known as Iggy the Eskimo. She said: "In part I made up the nickname. The rest was the photographer Mick Rock, who asked where I was from. I said `my mother is from the Himalayas' and he said `we will call you Iggy the Eskimo'. 
 When Mick turned up to take the photos I helped paint the floor boards for the shoot, I was covered in paint, I still remember the smell of it.  In the pictures my hair looks quite funny, I remember hiding my face behind it because I did not want my mum and dad to see it."
She broke up with Syd Barrett shortly after the photo shoot and moved to Brighton.

After she broke up with Barrett she dissapeared. Felix Atagong, who has set up a website in her honour, said: "According to the painter Duggie Fields, she got married to a rich guy from Chelsea annd led a "decent" life after that".
On February 2010 she gave an interview, and was found after three decades of anonymity. She said: "I have just been living very quietly, I left London in the 70s and I got married in 1978. I met so many people in the 60s – the Beatles, the Who, the Rolling Stones and Rod Stewart.  I was a free spirit. I have left that life behind me now." 
Tags: asian groupies, iggy, photos
  • Post a new comment


    Anonymous comments are disabled in this journal

    default userpic