W Magazine Volume 4, 2020

W magazine operates at the intersection of fashion, film, art, music, and society, both in print and digitally. With its combination of world-class photography and sophisticated journalism, W is a must-read for anyone interested in the worlds of style and contemporary culture.

United States
W Media LLC
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6 Issues

in this issue

3 min

Wolfgang Tillmans Photographer, “Yahya Abdul-Mateen II” (page 118) What does originality mean to you? It’s nothing that can be forced. And at the same time, one can’t be sloppy about it and rely on hoping that something will turn out “original.” Interesting thoughts and genuine interest in something—these two ingredients create originality. Whom do you consider original, and why? Nobel Prize winners. It’s so good to read about science yielding good results for mankind. I never understood how anyone can develop contempt for science. Who was the first person who made you realize you could break the rules? Udo Kaschel, my drawing teacher in the ’80s, once came to my parents’ house to see the stuff I was experimenting with. Since I was not traditionally talented, I was never recognized as an artist. He was the first…

3 min
original attractions

As this issue goes to print, we are less than a month away from the most important election of our time. My vote for former Vice President Joe Biden and Senator Kamala Harris is already in, and I hope all other Americans are voting, voting early, volunteering at the polls, and using their voices to secure a better future for our country. W’s Executive Editor, Armand Limnander, had the brilliant idea to ask an impressive roster of artists to reimagine the political poster during a time of urgent social change. In “What Do You Stand For?” (page 78), Mark Bradford, Kara Walker, Glenn Ligon, and many others addressed the current political and cultural climate in the United States by creating messages of optimism and unity—and, yes, defiance—in the face of the…

6 min
my life in parties: anna sui

The designer Anna Sui grew up in the Detroit suburbs, dreaming of the rock’n’ roll scene of the 1960s. As a teenager in the ’70s, she’d tag along with her older brother to catch all-ages shows by the city’s burgeoning icons like Iggy Pop and MC5, but it wasn’t until she arrived in New York as a student at Parsons School of Design and became friends with classmate Steven Meisel that she found herself in the thick of music history. “When I first started hanging out at CBGB, we would go see Patti Smith and then we’d go to what seemed like a high school gym, and there was Blondie,” Sui recalled. Sui brought that underground sensibility to her designs when she set out on her own in 1981, making…

10 min
yass, we can!

Roughly one week after the Democratic and Republican national conventions, the Movement for a People’s Party, an alternative political coalition largely made up of progressive Independents and Bernie purists, offered the American public its own spin on patriotic pageantry. Tens of thousands of subscribers tuned in to the party’s official channels to watch a stream of fiery speeches and testimonials from anti-establishment figureheads like Harvard philosopher Dr. Cornel West, the actor Danny Glover, and Nina Turner, a former Ohio state senator. The most captivating speaker, however, did not have a Hollywood résumé or a previous role in a presidential campaign. Instead, neighborhood councilperson Maebe A. Girl cut her teeth somewhere slightly more unorthodox: the Los Angeles drag circuit. But beyond hosting duties at boozy drag brunch events like Green Eggs…

9 min
a vision and a mission

When Mariane Ibrahim opened a Seattle gallery in 2012 to showcase the contemporary art of Africa and its diaspora, she felt like she was shining a lonely light on the continent. Times have changed. When she moved to Chicago a year ago, she was greeted, she says, by a “reception unlike any I’ve ever known.” Art lovers are now clamoring to see what she presents. “There was a bit of a joke among people working in the field of contemporary African art that it was getting discovered every year for over a decade now,” observes Karen E. Milbourne, senior curator at the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art. “But this is different. There is a seismic change happening. It used to be, ‘Look at El Anatsui.’ And now it is,…

7 min
off the walls

For Art’s Sake: Inside the Homes of Art Dealers—a new book out from Rizzoli by the Venezuelan-born art collector Tiqui Atencio Demirdjian—is, despite its artistic pedigree, all about interiors. Over nearly 400 pages, Atencio Demirdjian and photographer Jean-François Jaussaud visit the inner sanctums of the world’s top gallerists, from David Zwirner’s Manhattan townhouse to Axel Vervoordt’s 12th-century moated castle, set on 62 acres outside of Antwerp. But there’s a tension running throughout in regard to what exactly defines an interior, and how much things like architecture, layout, and furniture even matter when the preening star of the home is a culturally vital, multimillion-dollar art collection. Some dealers, like Jeffrey Deitch, seem keenly aware that the tenets of collecting might apply to contemporary furniture as well, and that art and objects can…