For me, my home is a combination of understated sophistication and high drama, much like my life.
Leading interior and furniture designer, Jack Freeman, has had a hand in creating and furnishing some of Sydney’s most luxurious high end residences. Known for his supreme minimalist style, Jack is drawn to simplicity by using sophisticated materiality, neutral tonal colour and texture, to create spaces that are precise, refined and calming.
His recently launched eponymous concierge design service, FREE-MAN, sources and procures exclusive fine art and bespoke furniture from all over the world, on behalf of his high-end clientele. The design pieces are contemporary, iconic and always limited editions.
In his account for A Grounded Life, Jack shares how his OCD and perfectionist tendencies paradoxically motivates his minimal design ethos, soothing the underlying need for order, calm and balance. His love of travel to exotic destinations fuels his creativity and his pursuit of the extraordinary, but his home is his ultimate place to retreat and restore.
Please enjoy this highly curated and exacting account of a very Grounded Life, lived by Jack Freeman.
Where do you call home?
I live in Balmoral Beach Mosman, we overlook Middle Harbour
What does ‘home’ mean to you?
A home is a representation of one’s self. I always find it so interesting visiting someone’s home for the first time, in that moment I immediately feel as though I understand them on another level. A home explains so much about who we are, how we live and our aspirations. For me my home is a combination of understated sophistication and high drama, much like my life. I am OCD and a perfectionist and so many of my friends say my house feels much “like an art-gallery”. I have always been naturally drawn to simplicity in design combined with sophisticated materiality, objects and design details. Its serious, yet meticulously calm and relaxing.
What are the elements that help you transform a house into your home?
Materiality and colour, these immediately set the tone as ones enters your home. For me I am drawn to a soft tonal symphony of neutral colour and texture. When I come home at the end of the day I want to feel relaxed and inspired. When I’m not at the office or travelling, home is a zen space to unwind or entertain friends and family.
What creative projects find you most excited and energised?
For me it’s the people I get to work and collaborate with who most inspire me. Whether that be a client, designer, artist or maker, I love the process and the journey. My focus is high-end bespoke private residences and my core business is my design gallery – FREE-MAN, www.free-man.store. We are a curated gallery who represent some of the finest makers of liveable art, furniture, lighting and accessories. I love a challenge and working with our concierge team we curate a lifestyle for our clients and so it’s the relationships I’ve built which I cherish the most.
Which life and/or work projects are you most proud of?
I live in the future so my favourite project is always the one currently in-development. I am currently very excited to be working on an urban duplex apartment with a Parisian flavour. Inspired by timeless fashion we have developed a limited edition series of furniture and lighting I look forward to presenting in 2022.
Could you share with us some personal insights into a challenging time in your life?
Every day is a challenge. For me I have a habit of always pushing the boundaries in what I do. I am never satisfied with ordinary and what is to be expected and so I find my days are spent half creative, half problem solving as I work to find a way of making the impossible possible.
What did you learn about yourself throughout this challenge?
Each day is a learning curve and I love that about what I do. It all comes down to understanding the people you work with and growing with them. What I have learnt most has been patience and enjoying the journey.
What type of activities or rituals do you instil to help you remain Grounded?
I truly struggle to remain grounded in what I do as a creative person, as for me the sky has always been the limit. However as I grow and I evolve I have begun to understand the importance of having a balance in work and life. For me the two have often blurred into one and so it’s the spaces I inhabit, the destinations I travel to, the projects I work on and the people I chose to do it with who truly help me achieve this.
What is the best life advice you have been given?
You can’t be everything to everyone. Meaning as a creative I think it’s so important to be bold and stand for what you believe and what you represent. In today’s age of technology everyone is so focused on what’s “current and popular” they loose themselves in the process. For me my work and design stand for a particular person and unique aesthetic, like myself they are typically young in spirit, bold, driven and know exactly what they want. It’s certainly not for everyone but if it was it wouldn’t be interesting.
Favourite travel destination for Grounding yourself:
Travelling is my therapy. When I travel I find I grow so much as a person. For me I love exploring new cities and countries but most for it changes my outlook and enriches my understanding of the world. It is this which fuels my energy and inspiration to create something new upon returning to my daily life.
One city must-do travel tip:
Marrakech, for its unique flavour unlike anywhere I have ever visited. I stayed at the historic Mamounia Hotel and visited the dessert on an incredible safari afternoon followed by a visit to the landmark home of Yves Saint Laurent. The combination of natural beauty and glamorous hospitality I appreciated the most.