As soon as Vanity Fair Italy previewed cover images from Vogue Italia’s “China” issue the internet was abuzz over the non-Meisel round-up of photographers– confirming the whispers that the storied lensman would longer shoot every cover. For models, having a VI cover by Steven Meisel served as a badge of honor and a telltale of imminent visibility. Steven’s famous partiality for beautiful women and inimitable eye has forecasted and launched numerous careers. So needless to say, his absences after holding the fort since 1988 is big news.
For the the “China” issue, Vogue Italia enlisted Craig McDean, Mario Sorrenti, Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott and Steven Klein to help carry the weight of Meisel’s absence, shooting a cast of established Chinese beauties Fei Fei Sun, Xiao Wen Ju, Jing Wen and newer faces like Yuan Bo Chao, Fernanda Ly and Gia Tang. Each cover bears the visual thumbprint from this league of extraordinary photographers: McDean’s romantic evocations; Sorrenti’s audacious arrangements; Mert and Marcus’ high-styled narratives and Klein’s surreal interpretations. Whether or not it’s enough to fill the void, the praise-worthy selection of models by these modern masters in celebration of China certainly stands on its own.
Jing Wen, Gia Tang & Fernanda Ly by Mario Sorrenti (Art Partner) / Images courtesy of Supreme Management (New York) and DNA Models (New York)
Yuan Bo Chao by Craig McDean (Art + Commerce) / Images courtesy of Next New York (New York)