Tuesday, June 21, 2011

In the ARC, after dark, In Vogue.

My book has been recalled to the library. I am trying not to think bitter and unkind thoughts about the crashing bore who has recalled it and instead am taking this opportunity to savour it- In Vogue: The Illustrated History of the World's Most Famous Fashion Magazine. 'Savour' or 'speed-read', what you will.

As I read, I keep coming across tidbits that make me mentally exclaim 'I've got to blog that!' So, you see, even when I'm reading in the depths of PG-ARC in a race of time against the Loans Desk, you are still on my mind. If that isn't true love, I don't know what is. So you can feel free to look at the items I'm sharing with you as mementos of our love (cause it's mutual, right?), if you like, and what's mine is as good as yours.

So I saw this photograph by George Hoyningen-Huene, published in September 1933 

and instantly thought of this photograph by Irving Penn, published in May 2004. 
Beautiful, no? And a nice nod to Vogue's history.

Hoyningen-Huene also took this image
 which looks like it was taken at the beach but really was taken at the Vogue studios in Paris. 
'The models were seated on boxes, and the low wall surrounding the roof, rendered slightly out of focus, simulated the sea and the horizon.' (p71)
I think there's something quite lovely about such an iconoclastic image being a sham- a beautiful sham. Which could be a metaphor for fashion as well, don't you think? (Oo deep. I feel like I can go there with you, though. I feel like you get me, and what we have is for real. Wouldn't you say?)

Also- did you know that this is a photograph?
I know, right?! 

I also have a funny, totally un-PC anecdote to share with you. So Edna Woolman Chase is the longest-serving editor in Vogue's history, running it from 1914-1951. She's the one who really set the philosophy of the magazine according to this book's authors (Angeletti and Oliva for those playing at home) and she was exacting, taking her subject matter extremely seriously and thinking clearly about the image she wished her staffers to embody in representing Vogue. "She believed that to work at Vogue, one must be and look Vogue. "We at Vogue", she said on (one) occasion to an editor who had tried to commit suicide by leaping onto the train tracks, " don't throw ourselves under subway trains, my dear. If we must, we take sleeping pills."" (p23.) 
Nothing like some moral support and pastoral care from your boss.

Anyway, I'd better get back to work. Especially as I'm currently on page 71 of 391. Luckily there are lots of glossy pages of photos or I would be pulling a few all-nighters. 
And I suspect that sleep deprivation isn't very Vogue.

No comments:

Post a Comment