For its "Asia" issue, V magazine made the perplexing decision to feature the world's most overexposed non-Asian, Lady Gaga, on the cover. Initial leaks on photography team Inez and Vinoodh's Tumblr and on Nicola Formichetti's Facebook seemed to indicate a double cover: the two close-cropped beauty shots of Gaga's jewel-encrusted face were striking, but their appeal might as well have been the product of an America's Next Top Model photoshoot (images below). Once the photos built up enough hype for the cover on fashion blogs, it turned out that there was just one standalone cover, with a single Lady Gaga baring three heads. In another issue, the troika may well have been read as a story about the chain-gang devil and pop-princess angel sitting on Gaga's shoulder, but since V's supposedly nodding to the East with its summer issue, I'm guessing that a Hindu deity is the actual reference point. I'm trying hard to read some significance into the jet-black, super-straight hair styling, but I should just come right out and say that the concept here is a complete mess. It's basically the equivalent of putting Gaggy on the cover of an all-Black issue and styling her in a tribal-print top and gold hoop earrings. Or, giving her butt pads and having her front a plus-size issue.
Inside the issue, Gaga debuts her new column for the magazine: her first piece clocks in at 1,445 words and includes two footnotes. The New York Times ran a small excerpt of her musings: “I myself can look at almost any hemline, silhouette, beadwork or heel architecture and tell you very precisely who designed it first, what French painter they stole it from, how many designers reinvented it after them and what cultural and musical movement parented the birth, death and resurrection of that particular trend." Ugh, have you ever heard a phrase more pretentious than "heel architecture?" If she's so smart, can she please explain what a crazy-rich white New Yorker is doing on the cover of a fashion magazine's Asia issue? Also, I'd like to know which French painter was responsible for the silhouette of my plaid pajama paints.
Your favorite disgraced designer is going to stand trial in Paris on June 22. After proclaiming his love for Hitler, John Galliano was fired from Dior and spent a good chunk of time in rehab in Nevada. If he's found guilty, he'll be fined 22,500 euros and face six months in prison. Even though I'm sure the former couturier will find some way to pay the relatively low fine, imagining Galliano in prison for six whole months is another matter. Would he have to wear a prison jumpsuit? Since it's Galliano, I'm not sure if being forced to wear the inmate's drab, miserable wardrobe would be the perfect punishment or a sick sort of reward: six months is probably just enough time to put together a haute incarceration collection. [WWD]
Taking a cue from Top Chef's very successful All-Stars season, Tyra Banks is bringing back the most promising (read: insane and polarizing) contestants from previous cycles of ANTM. The fourteen contestants have been revealed: Alexandria, Allison (from cycle 12), Angelea, Bianca, Bre, Brittany (from cycle 4), Camille, Dominique, Isis, Kayla, Laura, Lisa (from cycle 5), Shannon, and Sheena (from left to right, above). On one hand, this seems like a formula for the best season of ANTM ever: a combination of actual talent (well, like, one talent: Allison, and maybe Bianca and Laura) with supreme bitchiness (Alexandria, Bianca, Dominique, et al), and plenty of opportunities for the never-going-to-happen models to cry bitter, bitter tears about their dashed dreams and cling to thin strings of hope. On the other hand, ANTM has been making a push to legitimize itself as an incubator for actual modeling talent, and way too many of these ladies were obviously just chosen for their dramatic appeal. Shannon, from Cycle 1, might stand a chance, for example, but FIFTEEN cycles later, the lady is now twenty-eight years old. If her modeling career hasn't happened yet, it won't ever. Most of these girls were too old for a high-impact career in their original season, and now… To add insult to injury, Andre Leon Talley is staying on as judge for the All-Stars season, which means that Tyra's either paying him buckets of money or he's just really, really bored and never gets invited to good parties anymore. [The Cut]
Anyway, work from the shining stars of ANTM's first high fashion season, number 15, is finally rolling in. As promised, winner Ann Ward starred in an editorial for Vogue Italia (above) and covered the magazine's "Beauty in Vogue" supplement (below, left). I'm on record as a major Ann supporter, but her Vogue Italia spread isn't my cup of tea. The carrot-top cheese styling seems a little dated, and come on, we get it: Ann was a contestant on a circus freakshow. I'm more impressed by the Beauty in Vogue pics, and I also have to tip my hat to another Cycle 15 contestant: Jane Randall was the second runner up and I'd pegged her as The Girl Who Could Have Beaten Ann. In a beauty spread for Elle Mexico, Jane shows off her stunning bone structure and legitimate modeling chops. Unfortunately, once ANTM's All-Stars season starts, I've got to doubt that either of these girls is going to have much luck finding work. [Fashin, FashionGoneRogue]