Mum at work #3 : Mildred

Dear friends, 

 ‘Mum at Work’ interviews are going back! …And I’m proud to announce that there will be a monthly  rendez-vous! 

This month, let me introduce you to Mildred Simantov, a great artist and a super mum. I’ve met her thanks to Instagram and its wonderful opportunities… 

Mildred, 46 years-old, is a French artist and the creator of the brand-concept Girls have periods. She lives with an architect and she’s the mother of two teenagers : Cassandre, 16 years-old, and Isé,12 years-old. She tells to Sweet Cabane all about her professional path and her ‘career’ as a mother, which are quite connected one to the other…

Mildred, how did it come to you to create Girls have periods? I studied Art and Architecture at the University…. But I rapidly realized that working in a firm was not my cup of tea! When I had my first child, in 1998, I started to create ‘evocative’ objects  and made semantic design. I used to distribute my creations in department stores such as  le Printemps, le Bon Marche…. and also in New-York and Tokyo. I stopped this activity at the end of 2001, when I was pregnant for the second time. After my second child’s birth, I took my time, edited some books, and collaborated with another artist to create installations, videos and musical works.  We worked for the Carnavalet Museum, the  Nuit Blanche event in 2010 and made a music performance at the Palais de Tokyo in  2012 … and lot more! (www.thornander-simantov.com)

At the beginning of 2013, I created Girls have periods (GHP) :  I wanted to move away from Contemporary Art while keeping an artistic and conceptual dimension. I wanted to work on the action of buying and its limits : can we sell objects with such a name?  Today, the concept is much larger than that : clothing, jewels, but also collaborations with other artists that GHP presents on its website.

What do you enjoy in your work today?

I love the lively dimension of GHP : the project evolves depending on the people I meet, my Instagram community… I’m impressed to see how people love what I do! What I see, what I hear has a direct impact on my work…

How do you deal with balancing work and family life ?

Since I am a mother, I’ve adapted my schedule to my children’s needs : I start working at 6 am and I make a break when they wake up. I start working again after they leave, till 4 pm. When they come back from school, we make a big break (the ‘gouter’) and I help them to do their homework, we talk about the day,… I start working again in the evening, after the dinner.

I must say I’m very happy to be an independent worker, which permits this flexible work organisation and to balance  private life and work!

Have you changed your organisation since the children have grown up? Yes and no… It’s true that there’s less logistics and the schedule is more flexible… But you still have to be here as a mother to see how your children really are … I try to be attentive to them and to be at home as often as I can when they come back from school.

What moment do you love sharing with your children? Precisely when the children come back from school : we talk, we share ideas, we have a snack… A very good moment!

What moment is more difficult to deal with at home? When I start working again in the evening and the children are noisy… I need a calm atmosphere to work. So I ask my husband to take the reins!

To conclude, can you give us some good addresses in Paris?  

Fashion addresses :

  •  La Cour Paris, for its great designers (60 rue Tiquetonne, Paris 2)
  • COS for their basic clothes

Food addresses :

  • BOB’SKITCHEN to eat Vegan like in NYC (74, rue des Gravilliers, Paris 3)
  • Nest, a nice Asian food bar (9 rue Villedo, Paris 1)
  • And Café Pinson to have a cup of tea (6 Rue du Forez, Paris 3)

Thanks to Mildred for this great interview! If you want to know more about Mildred Simantov and Girls have periods, you can go there.

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