Jemima Kirke

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Jemima Kirke
Jemima Kirke.jpg
Jemima Kirke in New York (2015)
Born (1985-04-26) 26 April 1985 (age 34)
Westminster, London, England
Alma materRhode Island School of Design
OccupationArtist, actress
Years active2005–present
Michael Mosberg
(m. 2009; sep. 2017)

Jemima Kirke (born 26 April 1985) is an English-American artist and actress. She played Jessa Johansson on the television series Girls.[1] She made her feature-length debut in the independent film Tiny Furniture,[2] as a favour for her childhood friend Lena Dunham, although her actual film debut was in the indie short film Smile for the Camera. In 2017, she starred in Zayn's music video for the single "Dusk Till Dawn" featuring Sia.

Early life[edit]

Born in London to English parents, Kirke was raised in New York City.[3] She is the daughter of Simon Kirke, the former drummer of the rock bands Bad Company and Free.[4] Her mother is Lorraine (née Dellal) Kirke, the owner of Geminola, a vintage boutique in New York City that supplied a number of outfits for the television series Sex and the City.[5] Her character Jessa wore a wedding dress from Geminola in the season finale of the first season of Girls; also, earlier in her career, she was featured along with her sisters in a fashion piece in Teen Vogue in which they wore clothing from the store.[6]

Her father is of English and Scottish descent and her mother is Jewish.[7] Her maternal grandfather, Jack Dellal, was a British businessman of Iraqi Jewish descent, and Kirke's maternal grandmother was Israeli.[8][9] Kirke has two sisters, Lola Kirke and Domino Kirke, the first of whom is also an actress.[10][11][12] She is a cousin of curator Alexander Dellal,[13] shoe designer Charlotte Olympia Dellal and model Alice Dellal.[13]

In 2007, while attending college, Kirke obtained an abortion. She couldn't afford the anesthesia in addition to the procedure, and went without.[14]



Kirke majored in art as a student and received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in painting from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2008.[15] In late 2011, she held an exhibition titled "A Brief History" through Skylight Projects.[16]. In late 2017 to early 2018 she had a show at Sargeant's Daughters, a Lower East Side Gallery, where she exhibited portrait-style paintings, some of them neck-up, others full-figure, of women in their wedding dresses. Kirke was inspired by her own divorce, and the exhibition also contained a self-portrait of Kirke in her wedding dress and veil.[17]


Kirke considers herself first and foremost an artist. She began acting through roles she accepted for a number of her friends. Dunham asked Kirke to take on a supporting role in her debut film Tiny Furniture. Kirke and a number of other friends were called upon as a favour to Dunham since there was not enough money to pay professional actors. Although the film turned out to be profitable, Kirke received no payment.[18] Kirke reunited with Dunham in the HBO series Girls, appearing in all six seasons from 2011 to 2017 as the character Jessa Johansson. Kirke next had supporting roles in the dark comedy films Ava's Posessions and The Little Hours. In 2018, Kirke starred alongside her real-life sister Lola Kirke in Emma Forrest's film Untogether. The film premiered at the 2018 Tribeca Film Festival.[19]

In 2011, Kirke appeared in the music video "Wring It Out"[20] for the group Rival Schools. Both this music video and Smile for the Camera were directed by her friend Jordan Galland. In 2017, she appeared in the music video for "Gotta Get a Grip" by Mick Jagger, directed by Saam Farahmand, and appeared opposite Alex Cameron in his music video for the song "Stranger's Kiss". In September 2017, Kirke appeared opposite Zayn Malik in his music video for the song "Dusk Till Dawn".

Personal life[edit]

Kirke resides in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn[21] and East Hampton. She married lawyer Michael Mosberg in 2009, and they have two children: daughter Rafaella Israel (born 2010),[22] and son Memphis Kirke (born 2012).[23] In January 2017, it was announced Kirke and Mosberg had separated.[24][25]

Kirke is close friends with Lena Dunham, the creator of Tiny Furniture and Girls.[1] They became friends while attending Saint Ann's School in New York City.[1]

Since July 2017, Kirke has dated Australian musician and singer songwriter Alex Cameron.[26]



Year Title Role Notes
2005 Smile for the Camera Twin Singer (voice) Short film
2010 Tiny Furniture Charlotte
2015 Ava's Possessions Ivy
2017 The Little Hours Marta
2018 Wild Honey Pie Gillian
2018 Untogether Andrea Moore
2018 All These Small Moments Odessa
2020 Sylvie Countess Post-production


Year Title Role Notes
2012–2017 Girls Jessa Johansson Main role (53 episodes)
2015 Axe Cop Water Queen (voice) Episode: "The Center of the Ocean"
2015 The Simpsons Candace's Friend (voice) Episode: "Every Man's Dream"
2018 Maniac Adelaide Miniseries; 5 episodes
2019 High Maintenance Herself Episode: "Small Town"

Music videos[edit]

Year Title Artist(s) Notes
2017 "Dusk Till Dawn" Zayn featuring Sia
2017 "Stranger's Kiss" Alex Cameron (duet with Angel Olsen)
2019 "Marlon Brando" Alex Cameron director
2019 "Miami Memory" Alex Cameron


  1. ^ a b c Rosen, Christopher (23 April 2012). "Jemima Kirke, 'Girls' Star, On Periods, Collaborations And Sex Scenes". HuffPost. Retrieved 1 May 2012.
  2. ^ Miller, Julie (9 April 2012). "Q&A: Girls Co-Star Jemima Kirke on Tattooing Lena Dunham and Playing It Cool Through Her Awkward Phase". Vanity Fair. Retrieved 6 May 2012.
  3. ^ "Jemima Kirke". Jemima Kirke. 24 June 2012. Archived from the original on 5 June 2012. Retrieved 24 June 2012.
  4. ^ Interviews & Reviews – Simon Kirke Official Website Archived 31 May 2012 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved 21 August 2012.
  5. ^ "Geminola". Archived from the original on 27 February 2012. Retrieved 6 May 2012.
  6. ^ "Is that you, Jessa? Girls star Jemima Kirke channels HBO character as she models her mom's eccentric dress designs". Daily Mail. London.
  7. ^ Pang, Jeanine Celeste. "Jemima Kirke's Paintings of Girls".
  8. ^ "Jews in the News: Jews Rock Hall of Fame, A Minyan of Marvel Heroes". Archived from the original on 11 December 2014. Retrieved 19 September 2014.
  9. ^ Dempster, Nigel (9 February 1999). Jack the lad to become a dad. Daily Mail (London).
  10. ^ Weber, Mia (29 October 2014). "Soul Sisters: Jemima Kirke & Domino Kirke". New York Family. Retrieved 4 June 2016.
  11. ^ Kaufman, Amy (11 August 2015). "Lola Kirke steps out of sister Jemima's shadow in Noah Baumbach's 'Mistress America'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 4 June 2016.
  12. ^ Jacobs, Laura (26 April 2016). "Introducing Vanity Fair's Sisters Issue, Featuring the McCartneys, Waterhouses, Wojcickis, and Many More". Vanity Fair. Retrieved 4 June 2016.
  13. ^ a b "30 fun facts about Jemima Kirke: How She Landed Her Role on 'Girls'". Booms Beat. 14 April 2015. Retrieved 4 June 2016.
  14. ^ "Jemima Kirke Talks About Her Abortion". The Cut. Retrieved 27 May 2019.
  15. ^ "Jemima Kirke - Exhibitions - Sargent's Daughters". Retrieved 8 September 2018.
  16. ^ "Skylight Projects". Retrieved 6 May 2012.
  17. ^ Eckardt, Stephanie. "Jemima Kirke Is More Than Ready to Talk About Her Divorce". W Magazine. Retrieved 8 September 2018.
  18. ^ Vilensky, Mike (14 March 2012). "The Art of Being 'Girls' Co-Star Jemima Kirke". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 13 May 2012.
  19. ^ Cusumano, Katherine. "Jemima and Lola Kirke Are Really Tired of People Commenting on How They Look". W Magazine. Retrieved 8 September 2018.
  20. ^ photofinishrecords (25 February 2011). "Rival Schools- Wring It Out (Official Music Video)". YouTube. Retrieved 21 August 2014.
  21. ^ Pang, Jeanine Celeste. "Jemima Kirke’s Workout Thwarts the Usual Fitness Trends", The New York Times Style Magazine, March 24, 2015. Accessed February 21, 2019. "Four years ago, with a post-baby body that she couldn’t quite shake despite the help of popular workout classes like Pure Barre and the Tracy Anderson Method, the Girls actor Jemima Kirke stumbled upon Brooklyn Strength, a Pilates and fitness studio in Brooklyn Heights, near her home in Carroll Gardens, N.Y."
  22. ^ Zhong, Fan (April 2012). "Naughty Girl: Jemima Kirke's Wild-Child-Role in HBO's Girls". W. Archived from the original on 18 April 2012. Retrieved 6 May 2012.
  23. ^ "Jemima Kirke Welcomes Second Child". People. Retrieved 19 September 2014.
  24. ^ Heller, Corrinne (14 January 2017). "Girls' Jemima Kirke and Husband Michael Mosberg Split: Reports". E! News. Retrieved 21 January 2017.
  25. ^ Stone, Natalie (14 January 2017). "Girls' Jemima Kirke and Husband Michael Mosberg Split After 7 Years of Marriage". People. Retrieved 21 January 2017.
  26. ^ Corinne, Heller. "Girls Alum Jemima Kirke and Musician Alex Cameron Show PDA in NYC", E!, New York, 5 July 2017. Retrieved on 28 March 2018.

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