As much as we may think of the world of magazines as female-led, too often, there's not as much gender representation behind the scenes as there is on covers. That spurred W Magazine editor Stefano Tonchi to try and shake things up for the magazine's latest issue: Tonchi was the only man to work on the magazine.
W's fifth issue of the year was fronted, styled and produced entirely by women (other than Tonchi), and features only women inside. Cate Blanchett covers the issue, and she also collaborated on it as a guest editor, pulling clothing from female designers and giving input into which photographers to work with. She also penned a letter for the issue that references Roland Barthes's philosophy of photography, among other things.
"I'd like to think this issue is... a provocation to look at life through a different lens," Blanchett writes.
Besides Blanchett, the issue centered around "the female gaze" also features Ava DuVernay, Miuccia Prada, Cass Bird, Maria Grazia Chiuri, Katie Grand and Adriana Lima. Interestingly, the announcement from W comes the day after Garage announced its latest issue, which is covered by Rihanna and features all female photographers throughout. Considering that gender equality in the world of fashion photography is especially lacking, this seems like a positive direction for magazines to go, even if temporarily.
Will the effort also help create the buzz that might make the currently-for-sale W more appealing to potential buyers? Only time will tell. But for now, it certainly doesn't hurt our feelings to see more women getting to work both behind and in front of the camera.