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Vogue is a fashion and lifestyle magazine published in 16 countries + Latin America by Condé Nast Publications. Each month, Vogue publishes a magazine addressing topics of fashion, life and design.

Style and influence

Vogue was described by book critic Caroline Weber in The New York Times in December 2006 as "the world's most influential fashion magazine":

Vogue is most famous as a presenter of images of high fashion and high society, but it also publishes writings on art, culture, politics, and ideas. It has also helped to enshrine the fashion model as celebrity.

Vogue is widely published; today, it is published in 16 countries + Latin America.



History

Vogue was founded as a weekly publication by Arthur Baldwin Turnure in 1892. When he died in 1909, Condé Nast picked it up and slowly began growing the publication. The first change Nast made was that Vogue appeared every two weeks instead of weekly. Nast also went overseas in the early 1910s. He first went to Britain, and started a Vogue there, and it went well. Then he went to Spain, however that was a failure. Lastly, Nast took Vogue to France, and that was a huge success. The magazines number of publications and profit increased dramatically under Nast. The magazine's number of subscriptions surged during the Depression, and again during World War II.

In the 1960s, with Diana Vreeland as editor-in-chief and personality, the magazine began to appeal to the youth of the sexual revolution by focusing more on contemporary fashion and editorial features openly discussing sexuality. Vogue also continued making household names out of models, a practice that continued with Suzy Parker, Twiggy, Jean Shrimpton, Lauren Hutton, Veruschka, Marisa Berenson, Penelope Tree, and others.

In 1973, Vogue became a monthly publication. Under editor-in-chief Grace Mirabella, the magazine underwent extensive editorial and stylistic changes to respond to changes in the lifestyles of its target audience.

The current editor-in-chief of American Vogue is Anna Wintour, noted for her trademark bob and her practice of wearing sunglasses indoors. Since taking over in 1988, Wintour has worked to protect the magazine's high status and reputation among fashion publications. In order to do so, she has made the magazine focus on new and more accessible ideas of "fashion" for a wider audience. This allowed Wintour to keep a high circulation while discovering new trends that a broader audience could conceivably afford. For example, the inaugural cover of the magazine under Wintour's editorship featured a three-quarter-length photograph of Israeli super model Michaela Bercu wearing a bejeweled Christian Lacroix jacket and a pair of jeans, departing from her predecessors' tendency to portray a woman’s face alone, which, according to the Times', gave "greater importance to both her clothing and her body. This image also promoted a new form of chic by combining jeans with haute couture. Wintour’s debut cover brokered a class-mass rapprochement that informs modern fashion to this day." Wintour's Vogue also welcomes new and young talent.

Wintour's presence at fashion shows is often taken as an indicator of the designer's profile within the industry. In 2003, she joined the Council of Fashion Designers of America in creating a fund that provides money and guidance to at least two emerging designers each year. This has built loyalty among the emerging new star designers, and helped preserve the magazine's dominant position of influence through what Time called her own "considerable influence over American fashion. Runway shows don't start until she arrives. Designers succeed because she anoints them. Trends are created or crippled on her command."

The contrast of Wintour's vision with that of her predecessor has been noted as striking by observers, both critics and defenders. Amanda Fortini, fashion and style contributor to Slate argues that her policy has been beneficial for Vogue:

Criticism

As Wintour came to personify the magazine's image, she and Vogue drew critics. Wintour's one-time assistant at the magazine, Lauren Weisberger, authored a roman à clef entitled The Devil Wears Prada, a best-selling novel published in 2003 which was made into a highly successful, Academy Award-nominated film in 2006. The central character resembled Weisberger, and her boss was a powerful editor-in-chief of a fictionalized version of Vogue. The novel portrays a magazine ruled by "the Antichrist and her coterie of fashionistas, who exist on cigarettes, Diet Dr. Pepper, and mixed green salads", according to a review in the New York Times. The editor who personifies the magazine she runs is described by Weisberger as being "an empty, shallow, bitter woman who has tons and tons of gorgeous clothes and not much else". However, the success of both the novel and the film have brought new attention from a wide global audience to the power and glamour of the magazine, and the industry it continues to lead.

In 2007, Vogue drew criticism from the anti-smoking group, "Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids", for carrying tobacco advertisements in the magazine. The group claims that volunteers sent the magazine more than 8,000 protest e-mails or faxes regarding the ads. The group also claimed that in response, they received scribbled notes faxed back on letters that had been addressed to editor Anna Wintour stating, "Will you stop? You're killing trees!"

A spokesperson for Condé Nast released an official statement saying that, "Vogue does carry tobacco advertising. Beyond that we have no further comment".

In April 2008, the American Vogue had a cover shot by famed photographer Annie Leibovitz, featuring supermodel Gisele Bündchen and basketball superstar LeBron James. This was the third time that Vogue featured a male on the cover of the American issue (the other two being George Clooney and Richard Gere), and the first time with a black man. Criticism was immediate from many commentators because it was perceived as a prejudiced depiction of James beside the much smaller Gisele in a pose reminiscent of King Kong carrying off Fay Wray. Further criticism arose when the website Watching the Watchers analyzed the photo alongside the World War I recruitment poster titled Destroy This Mad Brute.

Other editions

In 2005, Condé Nast launched Men's Vogue and announced plans for an American version of Vogue Living launching in late fall of 2006 (there is currently an edition in Australia). Men's Vogue ceased publication as an independent publication in October 2008 and is now a twice-yearly extract in the main edition.

Condé Nast Publications also publishes Teen Vogue, a version of the magazine for teen girls, the Seventeen demographic, in the United States. South Koreamarker and Australia has a Vogue Girl magazine (currently suspended from further publication), in addition to Vogue Living and Vogue Entertaining + Travel.

Vogue Hommes International is an international men's fashion magazine based in Paris, France, and L'uomo Vogue is the Italian men's version. Other Italian versions of Vogue include Vogue Casa and Bambini Vogue.

Until 1961, Vogue was also the publisher of Vogue Patterns, a home sewing pattern company. It was sold to Butterick Publishing which also licensed the Vogue name.

October 2007 saw the launch of Vogue India, which featured Gemma Ward, Bipasha Basu, and Priyanka Chopra on the cover.

Media

In 2009, the feature-length documentary The September Issue was released; an inside view of the production of the record-breaking September 2007 issue of U.S. Vogue, directed by R. J. Cutler. The film was shot over eight months as editor-in-chief Anna Wintour prepared the issue, and highlighted the sometimes difficult relationship between Wintour and her creative director Grace Coddington. The issue ended up being the largest ever published; over 5 pounds in weight and 840 pages in length, a world record for a monthly magazine.

Editors-in-Chief

The following individuals have served as editor-in-chief of the American version of Vogue:

Country Editor-in-Chief Start year End year
United States Josephine Redding 1892 1901
Marie Harrison 1901 1914
Edna Woolman Chase 1914 1951
Jessica Daves 1952 1963
Diana Vreeland 1963 1971
Grace Mirabella 1971 1988
Anna Wintour 1988 present
United Kingdom Elspeth Champcommunal 1916 1923
Dorothy Todd 1923 1926
Alison Settle 1926 1936
Elizabeth Penrose 1936 1940
Audrey Withers 1940 1961
Ailsa Garland 1961 1965
Beatrix Miller 1965 1984
Alexandra Shulman 1992 present
France Colombe Pringle 1987 1994
Joan Juliet Buck 1994 2001
Carine Roitfeld 2001 present


See also



References

  1. Weber, Caroline "Fashion-Books: Review of "IN VOGUE: The Illustrated History of the World’s Most Famous Fashion Magazine (Rizzoli)", New York Times, December 3, 2006. Accessed January 28, 2007.
  2. Orecklin, Michelle "The Power List: Women in Fashion, #3 Anna Wintour". Time magazine, February 9, 2004. Retrieved January 29, 2007.
  3. Weber, Caroline "Fashion-Books: Review of "IN VOGUE: The Illustrated History of the World’s Most Famous Fashion Magazine (Rizzoli)", New York Times, December 3, 2006. Accessed January 28, 2007.]
  4. Orecklin, Michelle "The Power List: Women in Fashion, #3 Anna Wintour". Time magazine, February 9, 2004. Retrieved January 29, 2007.
  5. Fortini, Amanda "Defending Vogue's Evil Genius: The Brilliance of Anna Wintour". Posted Thursday, February 10, 2005. Retrieved January 29, 2007.
  6. Betts, Kate "Anna Dearest". New York Times, April 13, 2003. Retrieved on January 29, 2007.
  7. Wilson, Eric "The Devil Likes Attention". New York Times, December 28, 2006. Retrieved January 29, 2007.
  8. LeBron James' 'Vogue' cover called racially insensitive - USATODAY.com
  9. Annie Leibovitz Monkeys Around with LeBron James


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