Following Conde Nast's announcement in December 2019 of a worldwide major ideological re-brand for its most famous title globally, Vogue Italia has already replaced its cover photographs for the January 2020 issue with illustrations, as a way of highlighting the environmental impact of photography cover-shoots.
Conde Nast's 'Vogue Values', are designed to act as guide for editorial teams globally, which all of Vogue's editors-in-chief have signed off on, including Anna Wintour, British Vogue's Edward Enninful, Vogue Paris' Emmanuelle Alt, Vogue China's Angelica Cheung, and Vogue Italy's Emanuele Farneti. It includes the following lines:-
" ...Vogue looks to the future with optimism, remains global in its vision, and stands committed to practices that celebrate cultures and preserve our planet for future generations. We speak with a unified voice across 26 editions standing for the values of diversity, responsibility, and respect for individuals, communities and for our natural environment."
It seems that Vogue Italia had already been thinking and acting on these lines, with Emanuele Farneti's recent 'reveal' that all seven of its January 2020 magazine covers have been illustrated by well-known and emerging artists as they tell " the story of fashion, giving up travelling, sending entire wardrobes, polluting. The challenge is to demonstrate that it is possible to tell the clothes without photographing them."
With another nod to our planet, the money saved from photographing the covers is being donated to the restoration of the Querini Stampalia Onlus Foundation in Venice, which was damaged by high level flooding in November 2019.
Each cover, which hits the news-stands on 7th January 2020, reads "No photoshoot production was required for the making of this issue." Although the illustrations are a one-off, it's a constructive first sign of admitting that their practices are unsustainable and that other solutions need to be found and adopted, by all publications around the world. Italian Vogue will be one of the first of Conde Nast's international publications to use 100% compostable plastic wrapping in 2020.