14 June 2009

Magazines Are Precious Things

"“Magazines are precious things,” as (Alexander) Liberman sometimes told editors. They require pampering and purity and, not incidentally, money. Liberman tore up layouts at the last minute and counseled editors to spend, spend, spend, because spending, too, was part of the aesthetic, almost an end in itself.

"“There’s no place on Earth like this,” (Graydon) Carter tells me. “There’s no place where you’re given the resources you need to do what you want to do and also given complete freedom to do it.” A short time ago, Carter says, he offered (Si) Newhouse some possible economies. “I tried to bring up money with him,” he explains. “I had some ways of cutting expenses around photo shoots. He just didn’t want to hear it. He got all uncomfortable. Si said, ‘Just make sure there’s nothing that can hurt the magazine.’ In my lunches with Si, you wouldn’t know that there’s anything different from 2002, 1996, 1992.”"
- New York
Mr and Mrs Alexander Liberman, and thier daughter Francine du Plessix Gray, shot by Irving Penn in 1948.

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