Thursday, May 6, 2010

Vogue Paris & Vogue Italia

by Sara Klausing

Vogue Paris, February 2010

Published by Condé Nast in 19 different countries, Vogue is a network of magazines recognized throughout the fashion world. Every month the magazine is assembled and distributed by a Vogue team in its respective country, each with its own content produced for a worldwide audience. The French and Italian editions of the magazine, Vogue Paris and Vogue Italia, are no exceptions. Regarded as some of the most influential magazines in the fashion industry, they are tangible self-representations of national feminine identity. This concept, portrayed through editorials established French femininity with newly embraced Muslim subculture and the presence of English text.

Vogue Paris’ title of the February editorial, “Vogue-à-Porter”, wholly expresses its role today: the magazine maintains a balance between the creative exuberance of today’s generation and the reassurance of a timeless French elegance. Known for its political parallelism, Vogue Paris integrates the Muslim headscarf into the world of high fashion and French feminism, thus progressing the term as we know if today. While English loan words appear, author Philip Thody suggests that while the French language has “impenetrable ” grammatical systems, the vocabulary comes in and out of style almost as much as the clothing in the magazine itself. This attribution shapes evolves the French woman as worldly and gives an idea of “social prestige”.

Vogue Italia, February 2010

Similar to the relationship with Carine Roitfeld and Vogue Paris, editor-in-chief Franca Sozzanni plays a powerful role in determining the magazine’s final product. Despite that there are various articles pertaining to Italian culture, editorials clearly dominate the content of the magazine. Vogue Italia seems to give more importance to the role of the photographer, particularly Steven Miesel. Unlike Vogue Paris that began with French couture houses, Italy’s edition of Vogue is much younger and began with Italian prêt-a-porter designers. The short history of Vogue Italia is reflected in its content: it lacks a conventional tradition to balance with more contemporary perspective. While Paris embodies a “less is more” perception, Vogue Italia does just the opposite. When the images in Vogue Paris know how to be daring enough to create a boundary of “too much”, Vogue Italia eagerly crosses it. . Femininity in Italia pushes Paris’ limits of what is considered “too much”, and is accordingly celebrated for it’s over the top daringness. Thus, the “competition” between Roitfeld and Sozzanni is seen as “stimulating” and provides an incentive for each magazine to evolve each month.

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