The British Vogue went for resetting: as a result of the pandemic, the cover of their August issue urges us to pay more attention to the beauties of nature by presenting the British landscape of a thousand faces.
The prestigious fashion magazine has a tendency of reflecting on the relevant global phenomena of the era – the same happened during the pandemic, in a challenging period when we have every right to think that fashion journalism will lose its relevance. Vogue made it past the hurdles, and printed the April issue of Vogue Italia empty, with a white cover, thus paying homage to first responders, and at the same time highlighting the metaphor of the clean slate, which the world now gets for starting over.
In July, with the majestic photos of photographer Jamie Hawkesworth radiating hope, the British Vogue once again stood up for healthcare workers and other workers who continued to do their tireless work for the community during the pandemic with its covers.
The buzzword of their latest, August issue was reset. On the fourteen different covers, they showcase the British landscape through the works of contemporary British photographers and painters including David Sims, Nadine Ijewere, Lubaina Himid and David Hockney.
To escape the frustration caused by isolation and distancing in the past months, we went to nature and we also saw how the slowing life had a beneficial impact on our planet from an ecological perspective.
If we are going to evolve, to a place of greater fairness and safety for our planet and its people, our future cannot look exactly like our past. We are going to need a genuine rethink about many areas of our lives. Our attitudes, our priorities, our compassion. What and how we consume. What we stand for and how we voice it– said editor in chief Edward Enninful in relation to the subject.
The fourteen images feature the most diverse shapes of the British landscape: waves crushing against rocks, a bird flying over Wanstead Park, golden wheat fields, street view from a kitchen window, a path in a forest in Wales, or the Victoria Memorial rising to the gloomy sky recall the tiny miracles of our everyday life, the picturesque beauty and majesty of the land. The selected series may remind us of the 19th century paintings of English Romanticism, in which landscape art meant distancing from the cities and turning towards national values at the same time; Vogue recalls this practice in a contemporary form, while responding to a very relevant and global situation. It’s also of importance that highlighting local values and the beauty of the domestic lands could also mean an economic potential for Great Britain in the zero-tourism period.
In the essay accompanying the covers of the August issue, author Helen Macdonald shared her thoughts about how in the face of the pandemic we started to reevaluate our relationship with nature.
The familiar patterns of our lives have been broken, the future is unknowable, and all of us are searching for signs and wonders, for reassurance, for hope, for things that make sense to us when everything seems desolate. We are beginning to view nature through new eyes– Macdonald writes.