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Does Vogue Italia’s April Cover Spread Glamorize Violence Against Women, Take a Stand Against Domestic Abuse — or None of the Above?

Vogue Italia April cover where Issa Lish is wearing all white on a blood stained banister with her attacker nearby

Image: Steven Meisel for Vogue Italia via Vogue.It

In a feature which went up on The Independent yesterday, fashion editor Alex Fury grapples with the April Vogue Italia cover story which, according to editor Franca Sozzani, was created to raise awareness for domestic violence. (The spread was photographed by Steven Meisel and stars models Issa Lish and Natalie Westling.)

"How many women are every year attacked, abused and killed? You know, in a small country like Italy only last year [the figure] was 1,700 women and almost 130 that were killed, so it's huge: it's more than two women a week, you know, it's like a huge proportion, just killed," Sozzani tells Fury. "And so I said… why don't we give that message again, especially that the horror of life is bigger than the one that you can see in the movies. This is really a horror show, what we are looking at and what we see every day in every newspaper around the world is how fragile the woman still is today, and how she can be attacked, can be abused, can be killed.”

Fury suggests that it might be insensitive for a man (in this case, Meisel — who has photographed every single Vogue Italia cover since Sozzani became EIC) to create images depicting violence against women perpetrated by men.

"Questions are raised as to whether the images can avoid trivialising or glamorizing these issues," he writes of the publication's controversial editorials. 

Perhaps if these images really did get at the gruesome and yet relatively common horror of domestic abuse, it could seem inappropriate and exploitative that they were shot by a male photographer, for the glossiest of glossy fashion magazines. However, as it stands, the spread (which is available in full on Vogue.it) appears to have almost nothing to do with the purported issue, except that it involves male-on-female violence taking place in private residences.

I pretty much agree completely with commenter Mikel, posting to the issue's Forum thread: "After seeing the whole editorial, the 'glamorizing violence against women' thing planted by The Independent article seems rather silly and pointless. The entire editorial basically consists of perfectly executed stills from a horror movie and (spoiler alert) the women in the end are victorious in defeating their attacker."

See the full editorial (including a dreamy backstage video) on Vogue.it.

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The Buzz Latest News

Exclusive: See Bambi Northwood-Blyth and Dan Single’s Byron Bay Beach Wedding Reception

dan-bambi-landscape

Good weddings continue well after the cake has been cut, and great ones continue well into the next day.

The nuptials between one of Sydney’s coolest couples, model Bambi Northwood-Blyth and Ksubi founder Dan Single, were of course going to be a little unconventional. We now have visual evidence of that via photographer Kane Skennar’s visual essay of the sunny reception.

Featuring a guest list including model friends Erin Heatherton, Hannah Holman and various other people doing a stellar job of hiding their hangovers, the night segued into a Byron Bay beach bash complete with surfboards, bikes and a human pyramid. Try not to be jealous that it looks like way more fun than any weddings your fridge is currently reminding you to prepare for this summer.

Skennar’s complete visual diary of the wedding will feature exclusively in Russh Issue 57, The Escape Issue, which lands next Monday 7 April. In it you’ll also find features on rising stars Juliana Schurig and Zuzu Tadeushuk, new face of Thomas Sabo, Georgia May Jagger and American artist Georgia O’Keeffe

Check out our exclusive sneak peek:

(more…)

The Buzz Forum Buzz

Juliana Schurig Appears On The Cover Of Russh (Forum Buzz)

Australian fashion magazine Russh chose an effortlessly beautiful shot of Juliana Schurig for its April/May 2014 cover. The model was captured by Ward Ivan Rafik on some sandy shores with styling by Anna Schiffel. The shoot was also a result of an eleven-page story which can be viewed here.

IMAGE CREDIT: MODELS.COM VIA TFS FORUMS

IMAGE CREDIT: MODELS.COM VIA TFS FORUMS

"Love this, one of their best covers in a long time," wrote KateTheGreatest.

Anlabe32 seemed pleased to see Schurig on the cover: "Juliana is just so pretty! Love her editorial as well, and the others are nice too."

"Juliana looks beautiful on the cover and in her edit," enthused justaguy.

From personal experience, I think Russh magazine is underrated when it comes to the magazine business. Their covers are minimal which is what forums members rave about in various other threads. I haven't experienced Russh first-hand, but the content looks very satisfying from the generous online contributions. I love how clean and effortless this particular cover is.

Be sure to check out the thread and get involved in the discussion here.

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Meet the VAMFF Target National Graduate Showcase Finalists

graduates

Young designer success stories aren’t written in a day, but you can’t say it’s for want of competition – or, in Australia, competitions.

The latest in a string of initiatives aimed at getting emerging fashion designers off the ground was the Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival’s annual National Graduate Showcase. With Target stepping in as the naming rights sponsor (taking over from Sportsgirl), this year’s talent lineup was especially dense with designers worth keeping your eye on.

The most satisfying aspect of the show was the good mix of commercial appeal, understated luxury, and unbridled creativity. From the latter camp was Chin Hau Tay’s Beware Bear! collection, which combined tartan and red faux fur to deliciously exaggerated effect. Anna-Marie Gruber’s architectural knitwear was almost just as outré (cozy loungewear this isn’t) and abstract shapes.

graduates-landscape

Other standouts of the show included Edwina Sinclair, who founded her own label in 2011 and opened a brick-and-mortar store in 2013. But it’s not just her resume that looks promising – Sinclair’s confection pastels and bubble-like embellishments made for a bright collection in both senses of the word, yet every piece was so beautifully cut as to please even the pastel-averse eye. They’re also like little else on the local landscape.

The winner of the showcase will receive a $25,000 cash grant plus the opportunity to have their collection produced and sold in Target stores. The final decision will be a joint one between a panel of judges and the voting public.

Here’s the complete list of finalists:

  • Anna-Marie Gruber
  • Chin Hau Tay
  • Edwina Sinclair
  • Gabrielle Brown
  • Juliette Booth
  • Lillian Chan
  • Molly Younger
  • Roxane Chan
  • Tan Thanh Trieu
  • Victoria Thaniotis
  • Wing Chiang
  • Yan Wang

Photo: VAMFF's Facebook

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Shailene Woodley’s Favourite Thing: Canadian-Based Living Libations

I’m sure by now you’ve all heard Shailene Woodley’s surprising claims about the benefits of sunbathing your nether-regions, eating clay and making your own medicine. The girl has been like a modern day woodland nymph sharing her various home remedies with media, but there was one thing that caught my attention in her recent interview with Into the Gloss: Her praise for Seabuckthorn Best Thing Ever from Living Libations.

Shailene Woodley pictured next to Living Libations best skin ever skincare oil

Being an unabashed lover of any formula that ends in –lycol or features a “Toxic if ingested” warning, I had never heard of this product or company until now, but upon further investigation, was pleased to discover that they are 100% Canadian. Yuppers. Founded by Ron Obadia and Nadine Artemis, the Haliburton-based brand takes the best of Mother Nature’s pantry and blends it together to make wholesome skin cocktails. They even make the clay-based toothpaste Shailene is so enamoured with!

But about that Seabuckthorn blend. According to the site it’s an all-in-one face and body product that cleanses, exfoliates and moisturizes through a mix of Seabuckthorn Berry Oil, Golden Jojoba Oil, Virgin Coconut Oil, Tamanu Oil and many other goodies. Predictably, it’s currently sold out after Shailene’s interview, in which she claims to use it to take her makeup off at night and moisturize her face.

“They have the highest-integrity products that I have ever found,” she spouts. “Everything is next-level, beyond pure. They source essential oils and all of their ingredients from small farmers who are treated well. Even the way they ship is mindful—they have a zero-emission standard. They also make some amazing dark chocolate.”

That very chocolate famously landed the couple in trouble with border control in 2009 – charges were eventually dropped – but hey, if it’s good enough for a selfless Abnegation (and may I add, Alanis Morrisette), then I think we should all be open to checking it out.

Image via Living Libations/Lexie Appleby/Future Image/WENN.com

The Buzz Latest News

Post-Vogue Cover, Fashion Folk Now Sucking Up to Kim Kardashian and Kanye West

Kim-Kardashian-Kanye-West-Front-Row

Image: WENN.com

Although Kanye West has been a man-about-fashion-town for the past few years, what with his ill-fated attempt to launch a design career, his recent appearance on the cover of Vogue, together with fiance Kim Kardashian, puts #THEWORLDSMOSTTALKEDABOUTCOUPLE in a different stratosphere: Fashion folks, now they bow.  

For example: WWD, the industry's paper of record, is already gearing up for the couple's wedding this summer. "Invitations have yet to be mailed out, but it’s not too early to start thinking of the perfect wedding gift." And so the trade publication reached out to a dozen fashion notables to ask, "What would they get the couple that, quite literally, has everything?" #LITERALLY. 

A few of our favorite responses:

  • Stéphane Rolland: A life-like carving of the couple in an 18k slab of gold.
     
  • Karl Lagerfeld: A 'Balloon Venus' sculpture by Jeff Koons, but not one of the two Lagerfeld was gifted by LVMH chairman Bernard Arnault.
     
  • Alber Elbaz: "I would make a whole collection of beautiful summer dresses for North, because I know how much they love her, how much she means to them and how precious she is."
     
  • Roberto Cavalli: Respect, friendship and love. "I consider Kim an independent woman — just the way I like women."
     
  • Chelsea Leyland: A matching pair of Kappa tracksuits.
     
  • Erin Fetherston: A copy of Emily Post's Etiquette. (Ouch!)
     
  • Jude Law: A mirror ball. 
     
  • Maison Martin Margiela: Anonymity. 

[Bound 2 Wed: Gifts for Kim Kardashian and Kanye West — WWD]

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