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Vogue November 2020

Setting the standard for over 100 years has made Vogue the best selling fashion magazine in the world.

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United States
Conde Nast US
12 Issues

in this issue

3 min
first-name terms

AS LONG AS I HAVE been at Vogue, there has been Naomi. (I don’t even have to add Campbell; she reached that point of iconicity where one name suffices years ago.) In many ways, Naomi and I grew up together, each of us navigating an industry that has profoundly changed. Throughout her work, she has defined what it means to be the quintessential model while also transcending this notion. I can think of no one else who, in their career, has been a close friend to everyone from Azzedine Alaïa to Nelson Mandela. More recently, Naomi has become a figure of inspiration and mentorship to a whole new generation in the industry—whether it’s the model Ugbad Abdi or the Lagos-based designer Kenneth Ize. Her position has been hard-won. In 1989, when…

2 min

Paul Mpagi Sepuya When the pandemic started, photographer Paul Mpagi Sepuya had just installed an exhibition at Los Angeles’s Vielmetter gallery. Suddenly the space had to close. Sepuya’s images—often shot into and around mirrors, with the camera visible—were stuck staring at one another. “What I tell folks is that it felt like filling up an Egyptian or Assyrian tomb, left for the afterlife,” Sepuya says. He has since been working from his Jefferson Park home—he and his partner are nurturing a garden of California plants, from monkey flowers to manzanitas—as well as his studio, where he captured designers House of Aama (page 90) and Kenneth Nicholson (page 102) for this issue. Lately Sepuya has concentrated on creating collages, which he sees as “a pleasant way to work through material that has…

12 min
brave new world

My nose wouldn’t stop bleeding. It was the winter of 2019, and I was standing outside the Brooklyn Museum in front of a statue of a woman carved from granite. Her neck was strong, her arms thick. Our chins were both held high––hers with confidence, mine to stop the blood. Chronic nosebleeds had long been a childhood affliction, but at 28, I thought I’d grown out of them. Moments earlier, I had run into my former piano instructor. “Didn’t your father just die?” he asked. “How old was he? Were you with him?” “Eight months ago,” I said, shivering. “He was 85. I was holding his hand.” From there, he deflected, talking about the recent passing of his dog. And then he’d said, “Well, 85. That’s a pretty good run, isn’t it?” The last…

6 min
the class of 2020

Traditionally, November has been the month when the latest crop of CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund finalists is formally introduced in the pages of this magazine, but for the first time in its history, that celebration has been deferred for the year. Back in March, as the orders to shelter in place were sweeping the country and the devastating economic impact of the pandemic was beginning to be felt by the fashion industry, it quickly became apparent that an immediate response to the crisis was required, and within a matter of weeks, the fund was repurposed under the umbrella A Common Thread to relieve designers and fashion brands facing severe financial hardship. Just as the original Fashion Fund was launched in the wake of 9/11 to foster a new generation of designers, this…

3 min
in the field

For more than 150 years, Rothschild-family members have been the stalwart stewards of the Médoc-region vineyards at Château Lafite Rothschild. As the story goes, Baron James de Rothschild—son of German Rothschild scion Mayer Amschel—purchased the vineyard in 1868, after being dispatched by his father from Frankfurt to Paris decades earlier. (Mayer Amschel placed all of his five sons in European cities to buttress the family’s banking empire.) By then, Château Lafite had already earned its reputation—appreciated by stately oenophiles like Thomas Jefferson and anointed the King’s Wine, owing to the Ancien Régime’s predilection. James would die months after acquiring Château Lafite (whether he ever visited was long debated), and it has since been looked after by his male successors—until 2018, when then-31-year-old Saskia de Rothschild took over. Around that time, Saskia…

6 min
time regained

As About Time: Fashion and Duration was preparing to open on October 29, Andrew Bolton, the Wendy Yu Curator in Charge of The Costume Institute at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, spoke to Hamish Bowles about his process of reflection and re-curation. To be honest, it’s been wonderful to revisit “About Time”—a luxury that I’ve never had in any previous exhibition. As I have said, I wanted to stage an exhibition that was a meditation on fashion and temporality—drawing out the tensions between change and endurance, transience and permanence, ephemerality and persistence. Originally the idea was to create two timelines: a linear chronology of fashion from 1870 to 2020, celebrating the Met’s 150th anniversary and focusing on the fleeting and fugitive rhythm of fashion. The second timeline—the “interventions”—would represent a series…