Jaguar Jonze: “Songwriting is an important method of catharsis for me.”

Australian artist Jaguar Jonze released her debut EP Diamonds & Liquid Gold today and it’s a unique compilation of six Western-pop tracks. Jaguar herself describes it as a “culmination of years and years of influence and experimenting.”

Diamonds & Liquid Gold has got quite a Western theme going on and it’s no coincidence. “I’ve always loved the sound of Western cinema, but also my dad is a bit of a cowboy,” Jaguar points out. She then reveals that her dad used to take her to rodeos when she was a kid and they’re always “sharing country and folk songs” with each other.


Rising Sun is the opening song of Diamonds & Liquid Gold and Jaguar admits that it’s “a bit different to all the other tracks.” She also acknowledges the importance of her first single You Got Left Behind, because it’s the release that “began the change” in her and she was finally able to get over her insecurities and put herself “out there.”

Jaguar’s using her EP to help everyone “embrace their vulnerability and find courage” in not letting different types of trauma define their life. She also mentions that Diamonds & Liquid Gold is “the exploration of that mental health journey and self-discovery.” 

Jaguar Jonze is one of Deena Lynch’s projects, representing an internal dialogue with her subconscious. The other two Jonzes are Spectator and Dusky, both symbolizing dialogues with mental health and body respectively. “I have a little thing called Jonze Society, and it is the world that each of the projects belong in,” she explains.

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#80 – Deena IX: Waking the Tiger “I’ve had PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) for over 20 years and this self-portrait represents how I’ve changed my survival strategy. People often talk about two survival strategies – fight or flight, but we don’t talk enough about the third strategy: ‘freeze’. It’s not until I read an amazing book on PTSD and trauma called Waking the Tiger where I realized that ‘freezing’ was a survival strategy I had used my whole life. Freezing means that when experiencing traumatic situations, you play dead, just take it and go numb. It also means that you do not say anything or fight back. This had been my way of coping with abuse and trauma since I was a kid because it was the best survival tool I had for my environment as a child. What I didn’t do is learn to adapt that survival strategy as I got older. It was only until this year, when I went through a sexual assault by two men and again employed that same survival strategy of ‘freeze’ that I realised that although the incident was not my fault, I don’t have to just take it anymore. I don’t have to freeze anymore. I’m an adult with a different life situation and I don’t have to play dead. I gave myself the permission to change my survival technique from freezing to fighting, from a bunny to a tiger, from prey to predator. I realised I could change my old pattern because it no longer served me as the best survival technique and it wasn’t all I knew anymore. I’ve gone from thinking of my PTSD episodes as the frozen bunny, who is terrified, freezes or hides away when attacked to seeing myself as the tiger. The tiger doesn’t hide, it asserts itself and takes situations head on. It’s been a lot of hard work but this has reduced the frequency and severity of my PTSD episodes. This portrait is a reminder for me of how far I’ve come, how I’ve set firmer boundaries and cut toxicity from my life so that I can heal. That I deserve care and love and that I’m allowed to say no. That my body is not of a service and no one else is in control of it. That the trauma doesn’t define me. That I am no longer fearful, but fearless.” – @deenajonze DM for prints, mural at Toombul, exhibition at Logan

A post shared by Spectator Jonze (@spectatorjonze) on

“Spectator is an illustration project where I interview each person and then share their stories through a visual medium,” Deena introduces me to one of the Jonzes. “I initially thought my art would come under my real name Deena Lynch but quickly felt uncomfortable with that.”

“Dusky came about because the photo project is all shot in black and white,” Deena then continues to reveal.

All of Deena’s projects discuss emotional well-being from “an intimate, vulnerable place” and that’s why she’s grown to “advocate for the discussion of mental health.”

Deena has stated multiple times that her instincts play a major part in creating art. When asked whether it ever gets too overwhelming, she answers that sometimes she’s more “carefree and light-hearted” and writes songs that aren’t that deep. “But in reality, songwriting is an important method of catharsis for me,” she then admits.


Deena’s encountered quite a few obstacles recently. She had to cancel her USA tour, then fell ill because of COVID-19 and released her EP while being in a hospital. Fortunately, she seems to keep getting better.

Despite everything that’s happened so far, Deena stays positive and inspiring: “Nothing stopping this busy brain here!”

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