Thursday, June 07, 2007

Bono's Vanity Fair

Never has the title of the magazine been so apt. Bono is guest-editing Vanity Fair, and to show how incredibly well connected he is ("to make a serious point about poverty") he got twenty famous faces to create twenty different covers:

The covers depict stars receiving and passing on a message about the continent's plight.
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George Bush, politician Barack Obama, Brad Pitt, George Clooney and tycoons Bill Gates and Warren Buffett were among those who posed for photographer Annie Leibovitz.

Bono said he wanted to show Africa as "an opportunity" and added: "If I wasn't a singer I probably would have been a journalist."

Or a property developer. Or a Wall Street financier. If he wasn't those things, he probably would have been a journalist.

Leaving aside the concept of the cover, which manages to unite twee and overblown, isn't there something a little unsettling about trying to raise awareness of the plight of people with very, very little by decadently lavishing resources on producing twenty slightly different versions of the same magazine? And putting the same sort of people who usually turn up on Vanity Fair covers is hardly going to make much of an impact. Is this the best idea Bono could think of? Why not really create an impact by, say, having a cover printed on plain paper, rather than glossy? Something which would stand out from the other magazines and other editions of the title? And seem a little less like a greedy civilisation consuming enormous resources while half the world starves.


2 comments:

Thom Cuell said...

I think George Bush being photographed by Annie Liebowitz for Vanity Fair says something very profound about our society.

Can't quite put my finger on it though

Chris Brown said...

'Bono said he wanted to show Africa as "an opportunity" and added: "If I wasn't a singer I probably would have been a journalist."
Or a property developer. Or a Wall Street financier. If he wasn't those things, he probably would have been a journalist.'

I get it, but I can't imagine him *only* being a financier. I don't think he could stand not to be the centre of attention.

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