- Venetia Joubert
- South Africa
- Film Music Dance Photography
- Great Filmmaker Photographer Model
Venetia Kerith Joubert (born September 6th, 1969), is an American actress, singer, fashion model, philanthropist and political activist. She first appeared on Star T.V Korea as a runway model for Make-up Forever in 2005. She then appeared as a model on MTV. A British Cosmopolitan magazine article soon followed, in which she spoke about her relationship with her Thai boyfriend, Tanalankarn (Nu) Sarod. Joubert was then featured on Channel 4 television U.K as a spokesperson regarding inter-racial relationships. Joubert appeared frequently in tabloids, newspapers and magazines. Her initial interviews were with the Sun newspaper and Take a Break magazine.
From 2006-2009, Joubert co-produced 14 music videos with fellow producer and model, Sarah Oosterveld. Her first experimental video, Kama Sutra, reached an audience of over one million people on the internet within its first year. Joubert has also produced 3 reality based documentary movies called “Rough Cut”, part of which can currently be viewed online. These films include clips taken while being interviewed by Channel 4 television U.K as well as runway footage, although the three movies focus mainly on poverty and women’s issues and possible solutions to these problems. Joubert has landed commercials for Samsung electronics YP-2P and done promotions for Korean Tourism and appears quite frequently in her free time as a model on fashion television.
Joubert was born in Johannesburg, South Africa, daughter of mobile home and prefabricated housing units construction company owner, Michael Joubert and socialite Ruscilla Joubert, whose father had had his captain's ticket and as an officer, escorted Prince Edward in England. Michael Joubert was the C.E.O of a number of companies on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange and Ruscilla was co-founder of ZoZo and co- director of all their companies. Joubert's parents were often linked in society pages with the C.E.O of Allied Electronics, Billionaire Bill Venter. Venter was one of South Africa's top ten businessmen and his former wife Edith Venter was Ruscilla Joubert's best friend while she was still in Africa. Edith Venter said that former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto was her hero after having met her in 2001. Venter to this day is well known for her philanthropical work, especially in regards to helping homeless babies and children. The Venters were a life long influence on Joubert. Bill Venter is currently expanding mobile phone telecommunications throughout Africa as he owns one of the largest African telecommunications industries.
The Jouberts gained public attention when Michael Joubert, as a romantic gesture, bought Ruscilla Joubert one thousand long stemmed roses after the birth of their third son, Adam and the story became front page news. The Jouberts involuntarily gained further publicity by serving gold dust soup at a dinner party. The gold was actually only a dollar per plate, however it was a source of amusement to people and was thus often written about. By this time Mr. Joubert's main company 'Zozo' had become a generic name and the words 'zozo huts' has become integrated into the South African language system. Mr. Joubert's housing was very important to people as it was low cost and affordable.
Michael Joubert called the company 'Zozo' after Venetia, as she was his first born. Soon after, Venetia's younger sister, Camilla was born and Venetia and Camilla could be seen advertising Zozo products across the country. This was the start of Venetia's modeling career.
Joubert has royalty in her family, her brother Zavion Joubert could be Lord Carmichael if he so chose, but would not because Canadian law does not allow for citizens to have titles. A Castle in Scotland is related to the Milne side of her family.
As a teenager, Venetia became involved in many charities and felt frustrated when she was unable to help the burgeoning population of babies in orphanages. At this point of her life she decided to dedicate her life to making films about poverty. Later, just before she graduated school, she was subjected to viewing horrific events related to faction fighting in South Africa, where she witnessed brutal uncensored deaths, such as the necklacing, burning and decapitation of victims of opposing tribal gangs.
Ruscilla Joubert who was known in society pages for her sharp mind and insightful thoughts, was then asked to write a thank you speech for Foreign Minister of South Africa Pik Botha, whom she hoped would help in aiding the transition process from apartheid to post apartheid era. Venetia Joubert's sister, Camilla, recently wrote an article regarding her fears for Zimbabwe's people and about the current genocides occurring ( in the Vancouver Sun Newspaper (2008) www2.canada.com/vancouversun/news/letters/story.html?id=0....
Joubert gained entrance to the University of Southern California, Los Angeles California in 1987. She then attended the University of the Sorbonne in Paris, France and Cambridge University in England before graduating from the University of Toronto with a degree in Cinema in 1991. When she arrived at U.S.C., she began a long-term friendship with entrepreneur, Oliver Muoto, whom had also just arrived from Africa. Muoto filled her in on the possibilities of internet, video and mobile communication combining. Joubert was hopeful that it was a future way to bridge gaps between cultures and allow for international media integration and was particularly intrigued with voice over internet protocol at the time (1987). She had begun thinking these ideas because she had been heavily influenced by Bill Venter. Later Oliver went on to create enterprise portal software. Joubert was thus impressed when Mr. Muoto was made responsible for the launch of the first Web-based Voice Over IP phone appliance (the WebSwitch).
Early Twenties and Early Influences
The Jouberts immigrated to Canada in 1992. Soon after, Venetia Joubert was recruited by a few modeling agents while walking down the street. One agent sent her to New York, and it was there that she was noticed by the Foster Fell agency, one of the top ten top modeling agencies in the world at the time. Foster Fell wanted to represent her, however she unfortunately had to decline as she had just immigrated to Canada and the government required for her to remain in the country. Joubert was disappointed about having to turn down a modeling salary at a time when the modeling salaries were at their peak.
While in Canada she interned for Columbia Tri star films and was asked to do publicity for super-model Milla Jovovich and later, actor Jean Claude van Damme. She then began to build her modeling portfolio with fashion editorial photographer David Fierro who shot editorial for major magazines in the U.S.A and Canada, particularly for outfits housing Prada, Dior, Cavalli and Versace (Leone).
Joubert became suicidal after witnessing torture in the Apartheid era of South Africa and also after having been raped on two separate occasions, once forcibly so after having been involuntarily drugged. As a consequence, she tried to overdose and had to have her stomach pumped. Luckily, she gained a close friend and boyfriend, Michael deVisser, who coached her intermittently through her suicidal phases. DeVisser later went to Taiwan to teach, and when he came back he taught Joubert some Buddhist principles. DeVisser had a close friend who was also a positive influence and taught her similar philosophies that got her through these phases.
Unfortunately Joubert also had a third close friend who took her own life. These events are documented in both her movie and her songs. 'Cherry' was dedicated to her, an anti suicide video. The video is about the tragedy of suicide and the fact that depression is a result of too much pressure on people from others. The solution being to forget about what others think and to re incorporate fun into life.
Joubert then married marine John Curtis Dillenbeck. The relationship was short lived however, due to infidelity on his part. It was due to this marriage, however that she developed her 'new-age thinking' that ended up being syndicated in various medias and so she was grateful for this relationship. She found statistics online indicating that the vast majority of the world was being unfaithful (especially in third world countries). Joubert soon adopted the approach that it would be better for people to assume open-ended relationships rather than cheat, lie and eventually have the relationship die. Her theory also maintains however, that when one person has more than one lover, the primary relationship weakens.
During this time, she started a successful photography business that influenced her approach to cinematography. Joubert photographed models from Wilhemina, Ford and Elite. She also became a member of the Screen Actors Guild when she became a stand in for actress Winona Ryder in Ryder's movie 'Lost Souls'. She then started to film her documentary movie with the help of Steve Ackerman, a director of cinematography who had recently finished a short film that received and Academy Award nomination.
Death of Father and Political Activism
Joubert was very deeply affected by the death of her father and shortly thereafter the death of her grandmother. Joubert claimed she dreamt about both of their deaths about a week in advance of them. Joubert felt that her father's death was stress related and due in part to the stock exchange crash of 2001/ 2002. It was around that time that Joubert began to be more politically active and incorporated footage related to these events in her documentaries, especially when she found out about the Enron scandal and read the book 'Meltdown', about stock exchange corruption. Joubert asserts that the current economic crisis is related to similar events and that more focus should be put on government accountability on line. She feels that many large political institutions, banks and charity organizations cause world-wide poverty related problems, issues that she blogs about or that have appeared in her documentaries or music video visuals ('Poverty' music video). She feels that it is extremely important that law is passed that ensures that the World bank, the I.M.F, and the Federal Reserve report what they are doing online and how money is being spent that is easily accessible to anyone online.
She feels the same should apply to all banks and charitable organizations since the money borrowed/given is from your average citizen. She was heavily influenced by 'Meltdown' which explained how various institutions could cause countries to go bankrupt. She feels that all moneys spent in politics need to be accounted for and be able to be seen on-line and that people should petition for this to be done. She also feels that there is an inherent danger in the power of the stock exchange. It seems extremely dangerous that the world's biggest organizations rely heavily on one stock exchange (N.Y) and when that exchange is in jeapardy the whole world's finances are, because 10% of the world controls 85% of the world's finances. Also, it does not seem all that ethical that when the USA prints money most other countries money becomes less valuable. Another problem that helps cripple economies is off shore tax havens. The money that is being hidden offshore could actually end the U.S.A financial crises, a problem which Obama is currenlty working on.
Relationship with Tanalankarn (Nu) Sarodj and Sarah Oosterveld
Joubert went to a nightclub in Korea and met RZA of the Wutang Clan. She spent a few days with him and his friends learning about their musical style and philosophy on Taoism and eastern religion. Joubert was then asked to leave her hotel because she invited some of RZA's band members over and unbeknownst to her the hotel owner was racist. Kinetic argued that he had just been to lunch with the mayor of Seoul Korea, but that was to no avail, Joubert still had to vacate.
As a result RZA and band member Kinetic were kind enough to set her and her friend up in his 5 star hotel.
Soon afterwards, Joubert's friend introduced her to Sarah Oosterveld, who would later become her co-producer. Both appeared on the runway together and in various trade shows, after which both decided to join in a musical career and also to promote certain causes.
When Joubert first met Tanalankarn (Nu) Sarodj in a Bangkok nightclub, he could barely speak English, but they formed an immediate friendship. Joubert credits Sarodj with a natural emotional innocence. She states that many men in Thailand have this innocence and this has also been stated in many blogs written by European and American women in Thailand. She was approached by Cosmopolitan magazine (U.K) author, Hannah Duguid, who wanted to do an article about Thai romance. Later, she was approached by many other journalists to continue talking about this theme. She spoke to journalists and claimed that women were missing the element of romance in their lives and hence became quite fixated with Thai men, who were masters at it. Nu Sarodj appeared in several of these publications, and was asked to do several photo shoots for them and appear on television.
Joubert became disillusioned though, when she noticed a high rate of infidelity in Thailand and was surprised to find that in the modern Thai dictionary there is a word for wife number one and wife number two, but no words that likewise applied to women in the same situation. It became apparent to her that she could only hold on to her relationship with Sarodj if she continued it on a casual basis.
Joubert went back to Korea and in that time briefly dated Korean supermodel Ye Hak Young. After that, Oosterveld and Joubert began photographing poverty related footage especially in and around Cambodia, which they then incorporated into their videos. Oosterveld and Joubert were caught off guard when they counted one hundred Lexus S.U.V's in the impoverished downtown Cambodia, which they attribute to corruption in charity based organizations.
Joubert had developed a relationship with Korean break dancer Hyun Bin Lee during this period, but due to the fact that she still had ties with Sarodj, she kept the relationship open. This caused some mild sensation in the tabloids, which wrote about the fact that she juggled multiple relationships. She dated Lee when in Korea and Sarodj while in Thailand.
Joubert went to live on Koh Chang Island, Thailand. She had three separate gurus/missionaries approach her during this time who each spent on average 3-6 months training her in their religions. One was Indian, one was Caucasian and one was Asian. Joubert learnt about Buddhism, Indian religions, Christianity and about the Muslim religion and she claims to have been able to connect to the superconscious. This formed her ideas that all religions work as long as they concentrate on the focal issue which is love.
The Indian Guru had been trained in the art of Kama Sutra, which means 'love lessons'. He had been chosen to be a Guru by his elders, because he had what they perceived as having special gifts. Thousands of years of Kama secrets had been passed on to him orally as per Indian tradition and Joubert learnt a wealth of information regarding surpassing the physical/sexual and thereby reaching nirvana. This is why Joubert chose to name her band Kama Sutra xoxo. The meaning is not meant to be sexual, which people assume due to the association of Kama Sutra in the western world as being primarily related to sexual positions. In fact quite the opposite, it means 'surpassing sex'. Meaning the experience of nirvana, (ie. joining with the superconscious (God)) is preferable to sex and achievable on earth. Most people can only achieve this state through meditation, often with the help of a trained Guru and it is only rarely achieved. Hence people's preference for sex because they cannot easily achieve such a state as they do not know how. The idea is one cannot reach such a state unless spiritually ready (one has to continuously practice giving and receiving love) and unless one is able to focus exclusively on love for that time period. The state is an ecstatic state (the state of ecstatic love and peace) which of course is better than the ultimate sex, yet can often be achieved through sex ironically, though sex is not necessary.
Joubert felt she learnt a lot from the other teachers. The most important points being to learn to reabsorb power through rest , tranquility and positive thought, especially after helping others in traumatic events.
It was also around this time that Joubert swam out to help save 4 people from drowning during the high tide season in Koh Chang, events she described as being 'terrifying'.
Joubert met Tasanai Pipatchaijaroen (Neng) on Koh Chang Island. She began a relationship with him that lasted several years. Joubert almost married him, but after noticing that infidelity was higher in Thailand than other countries she second guessed her decision. Pipatchaijaroen was popular, and Joubert became frustrated in dealing with his many previous girlfriends. However, Joubert began to incorporate him in both her documentaries and videos, and continued an on again off again romance with him and maintained a continual friendship. She was then introduced by a mutual friend to KCTV's Thailand's Manager Keith Williams (formerly from ACDC) who offered to co-produce a music video with her. While on Koh Chang Island, Joubert then met Sony producer Patrick McGlynn, who stated that he was interested in representing her. McGlynn recently revived his own career when he signed with Simon Cowell's label BMG.
At the same time EMI Korea Producer, Chalri Young offered her similar representation. Joubert temporarily released a few singles of her work in 2008. Her first video Kama Sutra got over 1 million hits in under a year.
Green and Saving Africa/Asia from starvation
Joubert is starting a campaign to promote condom usage. When she was in Thailand she found out that Thailand had one of the worst cases of AIDS world wide until the government began a program to increase condom usage, and after that AIDS rates declined dramatically. Joubert promotes equality in her music videos and movies and is a proponent of renewable sustainable energy, which she feels is the only route to helping end world poverty. She strongly feels that wind power, sea power and hybrid cars could end the gas and electricity problem, thus saving lives (in countries such as Darfur) by providing food for the poor at low costs. She also feels that these could ensure massive rapid global transportation. Initially, however Joubert feels that people in Africa and even certain parts of Asia need to be provided with manure, water, and seeds to help support themselves. Medicated charcoal and antibiotics need to be allocated to prevent diarrhea and urinary tract infections and nets need to be provided to prevent malaria. Joubert contracted typhoid while in Thailand in 2007 and became anorexic as a result. She was impoverished and unable to pay for a doctor at the time and the experience changed her life. She then did some research. She read that dehydration is one of the lead causes of death in the world due to dirty water and felt this should be emphasized in global charity documentation. She felt that antibiotics should be made readily available to the poor to stop lower respitory infection (colds) which is also one of the leading killers. She noticed that the 'street children' she was encountering either suffered from AIDS due to sexual abuse, diarrhea and/or colds. In her still photos you can see symptoms of these illnesses in the children.
Joubert also feels that smart phones should be allocated (i.e. one handphone per village) so that people can listen to podcasts and thus be educated and also be able to reach journalists when in times of jeopardy.
Joubert also wants to help prevent deforestation. When she was on Koh Chang Island she was appalled by the fact that the tropical rainforrest that was thousands of years old was destroyed and replaced by buildings. She feels that many plants have great healing/calming benefits and are being destroyed without being able to find their properties and made to be extinct.
Condom campaign, Sexual health Information/ distribution
Joubert launched a pro-condom campaign. She feels that many people are unaware that one in three people will gain an std in their lives and that condoms are necessary to prevent AIDS and unwanted pregnancies. She also is an advocate of planned parenthood and proponent of teaching sexual health knowledge. She feels that many people are unware that women and men easily get bacterial, fungul and urinary tract infections that are very dangerous and make sex awkward. Many people do not even know they are infected and that they need antibiotics and antifungal treatments for treatment. She is also a proponent of I.U.D. usage. She feels that IUDs are better than birth control because they last 4 years and thus can prevent unwanted pregnancy and help control overpopulation.
Child welfare - Orphans - human trafficking
Joubert felt quite traumatized when she visited several Cambodian orphanages. Joubert went to one and found a boy of 9 years old who suffered from cerebral palsy. This meant that he was unable to move and merely stared at the ceiling all day. The Catholic nuns who looked after him seemed very disinteresed in changing his environment for him. He also had 6 massive lesions in his lips and his lips were severly bleeding. His lips were slit in 6 places. When Joubert asked what was wrong, they stated he had 'a fever'. Joubert researched cerebral palsy and found out that he was suffering from vitamin deficiencies. Joubert offered to help to raise money for the orphanage, however the elder nun refused her help. Joubert offered to adopt the child, but the nun said that it was a lengthy process and probably not achievable. She then told Joubert that she was dressed inappropriately and could only return fully covered from head to toe. Joubert wanted to take photographs of the child but was not allowed to.
Joubert told the story to a local teacher. The teacher stated that she had taken all her money and bought clothing and food and bedding for one orphanage, however when she came back she found out the principle had sold everything and syphoned the money into his account. Joubert also witnessed children she felt had been sold into sexual slavery and were also forced to pick pocket. She heard children as young as 6 and 9 years old using the world 'yum-yum' to foreigners which meant they were asking to provide felacio for money. She noticed how every time she went to the border, the children's hair had been dyed and recolored so as to look like different children so that people would think they were giving funds to new children. They were receiving very little money however. She was told by some social workers that children were bought for the price of a bicycle into slavery. They also were given heroin, which is in plentiful supply in Cambodia and very cheap and available, to prevent them from leaving the industry.
Joubert was told also that there were housing facilites that had hundreds of prostitutes in supply, most were made of cardboard boxes in abandoned buildings. Nevertheless the buildings were 'serviced' well as male customers were provided with duck eggs, and a plentiful supply of drugs along with multiple women and children. For three dollars men were provided with multiple very young women they could have sex with.
When Joubert briefly taught in Bangkok, one of the teachers was arrested for being a pedophile. Hundreds of photos were found in his apartment of him performing acts with children of ten and under, each was paid the equivalent of a few bars of candy. Joubert's aunt talks of similar practices taking place in South Africa as well in the documentary she produced.
Mobile Phone Communication as a form of Teaching
Joubert and Oosterveld tend to prefer modeling for the electronics industries for that reason. Both feel that people can be educated through lyrics which are heard on smart phones. The lyrics for example could contain messages about the importance of petitioning and reporting abuse. Africa does not have enough money for landlines yet, and mobile usage is increasing fastest in Africa. Joubert and Oosterveld are making connections in the telecommunications industry so they can continue with charitable work, especially in helping AIDS babies. Joubert says she noticed that the suburban Thai population would focus on spending all their money on mobile phones as this was their only form of entertainment. She thus felt that music was a way to reach people (her friends memorized English lyrics) and that phones were a way of reaching people.
Joubert and Oosterveld believe in tithing, that means they prefer to give all their money away to charity, except for money to maintain a healthy life. Both decided on this after crossing the Cambodian border when they began filming footage of malnourished and mistreated babies who they assumed had to have been trafficked (human trafficking) and whom they felt were being sexually abused.
Musical Style and Performance Joubert has a light soprano vocal range. Comments have been made about her usual film producing style, such as the fact that she mixes various medias. She is currently working with the leaders in the FX industry and also artists on Deviant Art and photographers in Flickr. Her lyrics often contain politically active messages.
Products and Endorsements
Joubert has been a model for Samsung electronics. She modeled for various Asian trade shows. She co-sponsored an event with Korean celebrity Diana Kim. She appeared in a show with Korean rap star Drunken Tiger. She was a spokesperson/model for Make up Forever.
She was featured as a model in several MTV videos and guest starred in several Asian Dramas. She wrote several language based books for P.E.I institute